The UK government has today issued an apology to 18 people, hailing from the so-called Windrush generation, who were wrongfully deported or detained. Each individual member of the group of 18, who have been identified as having been treated improperly by the UK, will receive personal communication from the government in due course apologising for what they have endured.

The ongoing Windrush scandal

It has been a number of months since the so-called Windrush scandal first broke-out and it was revealed that members of the Windrush generation were facing disciplinary or investigative action from immigration officials.

The Windrush generation refers to those people who came over to the UK from islands in the Caribbean between 1948 and 1971 after a request from the UK asking for people to fill vacancies in multiple employment sectors.

These individuals have long been publicly accepted as British citizens, however, they were never issued with the correct paperwork allowing them to remain indefinitely in the UK. Without such paperwork, which would explicitly prove their citizenship status, members of the Windrush generation have faced many difficulties in accessing healthcare, being accepted for jobs or obtaining leave to stay in the country.

Once the story erupted in a flurry of media coverage, the government responded to assure the public that the Windrush generation would be awarded the paperwork they were rightfully owed, which would enable them to stay in the country and access all public services.

UK government still working to correct their mistake

Despite multiple reassurances from the government that everyone affected by the scandal would have their cases reviewed and any issues with their paperwork resolved, many members of the Windrush generation are still living with uncertainty. From the 6,507 people who contacted the specialist hotline, which was set up to address the scandal, 2,272 individuals have now received their rightful documentation allowing them to stay in the country and have full access to all citizens' rights.

This calamity caused by the government stems from the 'Hostile Environment' policy which has been enforced in the UK in order to take tough action against anyone who is in the country illegally.

While the 18 people who have been identified as the most severely impacted by the controversy will receive personalised apologies, there are another 164 cases in which individuals have been wrongfully removed from the country or detained. So far the Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, has indicated that only the group of 18 who were mistreated most pertinently will be directed to a compensation scheme and given help to return to the UK.