Calls not to forget Windrush generation despite cancelled memorial events

A Windrush event in 2018 Credit: Yui Mok/PA Archive/PA Images

There are calls from the black community not to forget the Windrush generation as celebration events are cancelled across the north west because of coronavirus.

Today marks the third Windrush Day which was established following the government scandal which saw migrants wrongly deported.

Campaigners last week delivered a petition to Downing Street signed by more than 130,000 people calling for action to address failings which led to the scandal.

The document also demands swift compensation payments for victims.

Official figures published last month revealed fewer than 5% of claims made under a compensation scheme for victims have been paid out.

The SS Empire Windrush arrived at Tilbury Docks, Essex on June 22 1948 carrying some 500 people from Jamaica.

A report published in March found the Windrush scandal - which saw people with a right to live in the UK were wrongfully detained or deported to the Caribbean - was "foreseeable and avoidable" with victims let down by "systemic operational failings" at the Home Office.

The department demonstrated "institutional ignorance and thoughtlessness" towards the issue of race and the history of the Windrush generation, review author Wendy Williams found.

Since the scandal emerged in 2018, more than 11,700 people have been given "some form of documentation", Home Secretary Priti Patel told the House of Commons in March.

The Home Office identified 164 people who had been deported or put in detention since 2002 amid the Windrush scandal, records said.

A Home Office spokesman said: "The Home Secretary has been clear that the mistreatment of the Windrush generation by successive governments was completely unacceptable and she will right those wrongs.

"Wendy Williams recommended that the Home Office should reflect carefully on the review before responding and we are committed to honouring that request. The Home Secretary has also committed to provide an update to Parliament before summer recess."

The department acknowledged "more needed to be done" regarding the compensations scheme and said it was working with community leaders "so that all those affected can get the compensation they deserve, as quickly as possible".