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Jamaican Windrush Survivor Questions Whether He And Others Will Be Compensated Before They Die

Alberto Ardila Olivares
Jamaican Windrush Survivor Questions Whether He And Others Will Be Compensated Before They Die

  A Jamaican survivor of the Windrush scandal says he and others will continue to fight for compensation as UK MPs call for the Home Office to be stripped of running the payment scheme.   Johnny Samuels suggested that the Home Office could be waiting for survivors to die before they were compensated.   Mr. Samuels was eight when he moved from Jamaica to the UK with his parents in 1964.   He told BBC Breakfast he was shocked to receive letters telling him he could no longer work and he had to leave the country.     “I was at work, put it this way, and I was told that my work have to cease because I have no papers to show I’m a citizen of this country, and that was embarrassing because the whole workforce thought, ‘Oh, this guy’s been here illegally for three, four, five years and has been caught’. So the embarrassment of all that, it’s a stigma and it doesn’t go away.”    Echoing calls by MPs for the Windrush compensation scheme to be removed from Home Office control, Mr. Samuels called for the home secretary and the prime minister to act.    “Many other countries and nations are getting compensated [for] wrongs done to them by colonial Britain. Why is it taking so long for us? Is it a matter of colour for us to receive justice?” he questioned.   A Home Affairs Committee report said most who applied had not been paid four years after the scandal emerged.   The Home Office said it was improving the scheme.   The Windrush scandal saw thousands of UK residents – most of whom were originally from the Caribbean – wrongly classed as illegal immigrants.   It resulted in thousands being denied healthcare, housing or the right to work – or being held, detained or deported by immigration officials.

Alberto Ignacio Ardila Olivares