Monday 21 June 2021 / 10:30 PM Home Affairs / Nick Thomas-Symonds

Labour demands Home Office hand over control of failed Windrush Compensation Scheme to new Independent Body

Shadow Home Secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, has today called on the UK Government to give control of the Windrush Compensation Scheme to a new independent body, following systematic mismanagement under Conservative Ministers.

In his letter to the Home Secretary, Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, comments that “the lack of progress [on the Compensation Scheme] allows the shameful failings exposed by the [Wendy Williams] Review to continue.” He goes on to say that placing it under a new independent body, will “help restore faith in the process and get compensation quickly to people who have been so appallingly treated” and added that “the time for warm words is over.”

Labour’s call comes after recent findings from a National Audit Office report into the Compensation Scheme found that the Scheme was “not meeting its objective of compensating claimants quickly”. Meanwhile, the UK Government’s own figures show that just 687 people have received compensation, from the 11,500 people the Home Office estimated might be eligible. Tragically, at least 21 people have died waiting for justice.

Labour’s calls coincide with Windrush Day.

Commenting, Nick Thomas-Symonds MP, Shadow Home Secretary, said:

“Windrush Day is an historic day in our national story – and we owe the Windrush generation an enormous debt of gratitude.

“Shamefully, the mishandling of the Windrush Compensation Scheme by Conservative Ministers has heaped insult upon injustice. The numbers speak for themselves, with fewer than 700 people receiving compensation and least 21 people have died waiting for justice.

“Labour is calling for urgent action to overhaul the scheme, by placing it under independent leadership away from the Home Office. This is to help restore faith in the process and quickly get compensation to people who have been so appallingly treated. This injustice cannot continue.”

Commenting, Marsha De Cordova MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities, said:

“This injustice cannot continue. The Windrush Compensation Scheme must be placed under independent leadership away from the Home Office so that people can finally receive the compensation they deserve.

“The Windrush scandal was an example of racial injustice, which is still experienced by many Black Caribbean people across British society.

“That is why the next Labour government will introduce a Race Equality Act, to systematically tackle structural and institutional racism.”