On 15th April, I wrote a letter co-signed by 140 MPs, calling for the Prime Minister to take urgent action to address the Windrush scandal. The letter urged the Prime Minister “to guarantee the status of all Commonwealth nationals whose right to remain is protected by law and to provide an effective, humane route to the clarification of their status.” I also demanded that the Prime Minister meet with Commonwealth nationals and their legal representatives to address this crisis.
On Monday 16th April, I secured an Urgent Question calling on the Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, make an urgent statement on the status of Windrush citizens in this country. In the debate, I asked for the Home Secretary to provide us with information on how many people had been wrongly deported, and detained and prisoners in their own country. You can watch a clip of my speech here. I said:
Can the Secretary of State tell us how many people have been deported? She suggested earlier that she would ask the high commissioners, but it is her Department that has deported those people. She should know the number. Can she tell the House how many have been detained as prisoners in their own country? Can she tell us how many have been denied healthcare under the national health service, how many have been denied pensions and how many have lost their jobs? This is a day of national shame, and it has come about because of a “hostile environment” and a policy that was begun under her Prime Minister. Let us call it as it is: if you lay down with dogs, you get fleas, and that is what has happened with the far right rhetoric in this country. Will the Secretary of State apologise properly? Will she explain how quickly the team will act to ensure that the thousands of British men and women who have been denied their rights in this country on her watch in the Home Office are satisfied?