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Friday, March 20, 2020

Will the Government get off scot-free over latest scandal?

In many ways the publication of inspector of constabulary Wendy Williams in long-awaited report into the Windrush scandal has come at a fortuitous time for the Home Office and the UK Government - the vast majority of the public and the UK media are so engrossed in tackling the coronavirus crisis that the report's damning conclusions will struggle to gain any traction. Nevertheless it is worth recording Williams' conclusions.

As the Independent reports, the inquiry found that the Home Office demonstrated “institutional ignorance and thoughtlessness” towards the issue of race and that those affected were let down by “systemic operational failings”:

In a damning indictment of the Home Office, inspector of constabulary Wendy Williams, the report’s author, stated that the fiasco, which saw people with a right to live in the UK wrongfully detained or deported to the Caribbean, was “foreseeable and avoidable”.

She said: “Warning signs from inside and outside the Home Office were simply not heeded by officials and ministers. Even when stories of members of the Windrush generation being affected by the immigration control started to emerge in the media from 2017 onwards, the department was slow to react.”

Ms Williams accused successive governments of trying to demonstrate they were being tough on immigration by tightening immigration control and passing laws creating, and then expanding the “hostile environment”, with a “complete disregard” for the Windrush generation.

The report identifies organisational factors in the Home Office which created the operating environment in which the mistakes could be made, including a “culture of disbelief and carelessness” when dealing with immigration applications.

It concludes that the Windrush scandal showed “institutional ignorance and thoughtlessness” on race issues which is “consistent with some elements of the definition of institutional racism”.

As David Lammy MP says, the review is a “brutal indictment” of the Home Office which showed it was “wholly unfit” for the society it is supposed to serve:

“The review shows the Windrush scandal was not an innocent mistake, but a systemic pattern of appalling behaviour rooted in a toxic internal culture and a failure of the department to understand Britain’s colonial history,” he said.

“When the problem is institutional, the only solution is to tear out the ruined foundations and rebuild the institution brick by brick. This is what the Home Office needs.”

Once this current public health crisis is over, we really need to revisit this review properly and insist that corrective action is put into place. To do otherwise risks future governments repeating the unfair and racist treatment of British citizens that should never have happened in the first place.
Yes, Windrush must not be allowed to be forgotten.
Along with this is Priti Patel's behaviour

Along with the Home Office Chris Grayling and the Russian Papers should not get away SCOT-FREE. Now that Putin has made himself dictator for life democratic institutions should become stronger to stop his planned destruction of it.
The problems I have mentioned may be put on the back burner until Covid 19 is over BUT THEN THEY MUST BE RE-IGNITED.
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