WINDRUSH National Day of Action will be held next year to press the Tory government to fulfil its pledges to Commonwealth-born British citizens who have suffered as a result of heavy-handed immigration policies.
The day will coincide with the United Nations International Day for Social Justice on Saturday February 23, it was announced at the second national Windrush conference that was held over the weekend.
The event at Nottingham University was organised by BAME Lawyers 4 Justice, Black Activists Rising Against Cuts (Barac) UK, Blaksox, Operation Black Vote, (OBV), Society of Black Lawyers, (SBL), Momentum Black Caucus, and Windrush Action Groups from Nottingham, Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds, and London.
They demanded a public inquiry into the Windrush scandal that saw the government being forced to apologise after British citizens were deported, detained and threatened with removal, as well as losing their jobs, benefits and right to use the NHS.
Chair of the conference and OBV trustee David Weaver said: “The government needs to recognise the anger, tragedy and despair caused by this unprecedented and gross violation of black British citizens’ human rights.
“This conference puts the government on notice that victims will not be silenced or intimidated by the racism they’ve faced.
“On the contrary, both Windrush victims and the country at large are rightly appalled at the treatment they’ve been forced to endure.
“This conference reaffirms the demand for no cap or limit on the compensation to victims and the urgent need to reform immigration legislation to ensure this never happens again.”
Barac UK chair Zita Holbourne said that “real action” was needed to ensure that no further cases of “horrific” discrimination take place.
“There are already 11 reported deaths of those deported plus others who have died in the UK. Some faced with what can only be described as hell on Earth have sadly taken their own lives,” she added.
Momentum Black Caucus national press officer Lee Jasper said: “The illegal deportation of British black citizens over decades by the British state represents a most vile defilement of the citizenship rights of a people, Windrush generation, who helped rebuild this country from the ground up.
“The social contract between the British state and black British citizens has been broken, smashed on the rocks of institutional racism and blind indifference.”