Mon | Oct 22, 2018

20 persons so far certain of Windrush compensation

Published:Thursday | September 6, 2018 | 12:00 AMPaul Clarke/Gleaner Writer
Asif Ahmad

The Home Office - a ministerial department of the British Government - has so far reviewed nearly 12,000 cases of detentions and deportations in wake of the Windrush saga, according to Asif Ahmad, the British high commissioner to Jamaica.

Ahmad noted that the range of eligibility for compensation for persons from the Windrush Generation affected by British immigration law is somewhere between 12,000 to 20 people.

He told The Gleaner yesterday that the 12,000 is the rounding up of the 11,800 cases that the Home Office had reviewed.

"These are people who contacted them (Home Office), people who have been referred to them by high commissions, by the Jamaican Government, by Barbados, et cetera, and, indeed, from all over the world," Ahmad said.

"In total, the Home Office has reviewed 11,800 cases. Of the 72 people drawn from that process, 18 were identified during a detailed review of removals, detentions, and compliant environment measures affecting Caribbean nationals."

According to Ahmad, evidence suggests that those 18 people arrived in the United Kingdom (UK) from the Caribbean before 1973, and stayed in the UK permanently, but were unable to demonstrate their continuous residence. Eleven of the 18 went on to leave the country voluntarily, while the remaining seven were detained but subsequently released without being removed.

 

SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN DEPORTED

 

"It is the sum total of individuals whose cases have been logged in the Home Office and then 20 is the other extreme of cases that the home secretary has personally acknowledged as individuals who were deported where they should not have been deported," Ahmad said.

"So those are clear-cut cases where something has gone wrong. In between those two figures are the real numbers that we are hunting, which is how many people will ultimately be deemed eligible for the compensation scheme, but remember, the scheme itself has not been developed yet."

In addition, he said, 2,272 people were helped by the Home Office Task Force to get the relevant documentation they need to prove their existing right to be in the UK under the initial arrangements put in place prior to the establishment of the Windrush Scheme.

The task force also confirmed that 1,465 people have

been granted citizenship or documentation to prove their status under the formal Windrush Scheme.

The Windrush Task Force is a team that has been set up to review applications from people who are eligible to apply under the Windrush Scheme.

Persons seeking redress under the Windrush Scheme Policy may apply to the website www.gov.uk/government/publications/undocumented-commonwealth-citizens-re.... There is no fee for this application.

paul.clarke@gleanerjm.com