What is the Windrush scandal?

The Windrush scandal was “foreseeable and avoidable” and victims were let down by “systemic operational failings” at the Home Office, according to an official report.

– What is the Windrush scandal?

In April 2018 it emerged that some immigrants who arrived in the UK between the late 1940s and early 1970s were facing deportation and being denied access to healthcare due to paperwork issues.

Officials were forced to defend a decision to destroy thousands of landing card slips recording the arrival of Windrush generation immigrants into the UK.

The Home Office apologised, Amber Rudd lost her job as home secretary, and Sajid Javid was drafted in to fill her shoes, becoming the first person from an ethnic minority background to hold the position.

Windrush generation immigration controversy
Sajid Javid outside the Home Office after he was appointed as the new Home Secretary (Stefan Rousseau/PA)

– What about deportations?

The Home Office said it had identified 164 people who had been removed from the country or put in detention since 2002 amid the Windrush scandal, according to records up to the end of June.

The department has stressed that immigration officers will not take action against individuals coming forward as part of the scheme, but some campaigners claim the fear of this happening is still putting off victims from coming forward.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said on Thursday that so far more than 11,700 people had been “granted some form of documentation” by the Home Office, while previous figures said some 2,499 have their status confirmed.

Windrush anniversary
Theresa May, pictured at the service of thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey to mark the 70th anniversary of the Windrush Generation arriving in Britain, announced a compensation scheme while PM (Niklas Halle’n/PA)

– What is the Windrush compensation scheme and how does it work?

When she was prime minister, Theresa May announced a compensation scheme to pay those affected.

Victims need to submit a claim form and evidence to support their application.

There is an estimated £200 million compensation pot under the two-year initiative for people facing difficulties demonstrating their immigration status.

There will be no cap on the total amount awarded and up to 15,000 eligible claims are expected to be lodged.

The funds will not be split between victims – each application will be assessed individually and a level of payout decided.