We are pleased to invite you to the launch of our Administrative Justice Council Working Group report on the Windrush Compensation Scheme.
In 2018, news of the Windrush scandal reached the public domain, when it emerged that hundreds of Commonwealth citizens had been detained, deported and denied legal rights after wrongly being classified as illegal and/or undocumented immigrants under the Home Office’s “hostile environment”. Hundreds of individuals were placed in immigration detention, lost their jobs and homes and were threatened with removal, with many others deported to countries they hadn’t resided in since childhood.
The Windrush Compensation Scheme was launched in April 2019 by the Home Office to compensate members of the Windrush generation and their families for the losses and hardships they suffered as a result of not being able to demonstrate their lawful immigration status. When the scheme was set up the Home Office estimated that 15,000 people would be eligible for compensation. As at the end of August 2021 only 837 people have received payments.
The AJC set up a working group to investigate the failings of the Scheme. We found that the Scheme suffers from a lack of transparency and clarity, delays, overly complex systems, a lack of training and understanding in caseworkers, and lack of legal representation for Claimants. To exacerbate this, it is administered by the Home Office, despite being the department responsible for the original problems, which creates a pervading feeling of mistrust with the process itself.
At the launch event Professor Robert Thomas, Chair of the Working Group will introduce the report and its recommendations. A panel discussion on its findings will follow, with speakers including:
Jacqueline McKenzie, Partner, Leigh Day
Glenda Caesar, Claimant, Windrush Lives
Patrick Vernon, Social Commentator and Campaigner
Martin Levermore OBE, Independent Person to the Scheme
Tim Bowden, Partner, Dechert
This event will take place via a video link. Details will follow after registration.
If you would like to attend the launch please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org.