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Social Justice, Human Rights, Immigration Policy, Government Accountability, and Civil Rights.

Age UK Report: Assessing the Impact of the Windrush Compensation Scheme

“Uncovering the Truth: The Windrush Tragedy Continues

Despite years of advocacy and promises for justice, the Windrush Generation still awaits proper recognition and restitution. Join us as we delve into the ongoing struggle for justice and equity in the aftermath of the Home Office scandal.”

By Professor Patrick Vernon OBEWindrush Campaigner and Equity system leader

Professor Patrick Vernon OBE

The Home Office scandal (Windrush scandal), which took place for many years, but was only publicised in 2017-2018, ironically and sadly made the British public realise the enormous contribution of the Windrush Generation to Britain post-World War II.

Despite many attempts and campaigns to raise and acknowledge the history of the contribution of the Windrush Generation, and particularly the campaign I was involved in for a national Windrush Day, it took the scandal itself to do this, one which devastated the lives of thousands of Windrush elders in terms of losing their homes, jobs, being deported, threatened deportation and affecting their physical and mental health.

Despite the platitudes of and apologies by politicians over the last several years, and the support of the British public, justice has still not been done for this generation.

This is despite the fact that the Government launched the Windrush Compensation Scheme in April 2019.

This scheme has essentially failed to meet the financial and emotional losses incurred by the Government’s policy.

This report from Age UK highlights again the injustices and particularly the losses incurred connected. with pension rights and loss of future income.

Despite the work done by lawyers and campaigners for many years, the Government has not acknowledged this, which means that their notion of righting the wrongs has failed miserably on this account alone.

So, the question is: why is it that after all these years, the Windrush Generation has not been given the proper recognition in terms of the losses they have incurred in the past and particularly in the future as elders retiring?


When we come to retirement, it’s meant to be a time when one has a better quality of life. Sadly, for the Windrush generation, because of the impact of the colour bar in the 1950s to the 1970s, they were often paid less than their white counterparts, which means that they had earned less, and thus were not able to build the pension pots and contributions that many take for granted today.

That is why The Age UK report Justice Denied: Reforming the Windrush Compensation Scheme ( ), which calls for urgent and fundamental reform to the Scheme.

Many Windrush victims are older people who are at the most vulnerable stage in their lives. Their vulnerability is compounded by the uncertainties of waiting for a compensation decision that will determine the quality of the remainder of their lives.

In the report you can read the stories of three of these older people caught up in the scandal: Glenda Caeser aged 64, Thomas Tobierre, aged 70 and Conroy Downie aged 67.

These Windrush survivors and many other attended recently a debate in the House of Lords led by Baroness Floella Benjamin where this report and feedback from a range of organisations provided evidence and briefings on the failures of the compensation scheme and lack of legal aid which shaped the debate such as Justice4 Windrush, Windrush National Organisation, Windrush Justice Clinic, Action for Race Equality, Wolverhampton Legal Advice Clinic, and Leigh Day Solicitors.

Great contributions particularly from Baroness Benjamin, Lord Bourne, Lord Woolley , Lord Adebowale, Lord Davies, and Lord Hastings see link to the debate

The Age UK report calls for the following changes to be made to the scheme: The removal of the Compensation Scheme from the Home Office to an independent body Compensation to be made available for losses to private pensions.

Faster application and appeals processes. Better training for caseworkers and determined management action to ensure greater consistency between cases in terms of outcomes. Improved routes for challenging Compensation Scheme decisions.

This report needs to be taken seriously by this Government, to ensure not only that the Windrush Compensation Scheme is removed from the Home Office and managed independently, but also that the scheme is fundamentally revised and updated to recognise pension loss and loss of future earnings as well. But we need to go beyond this.

We need to do more work looking at the health and wellbeing of the Windrush Generation.

Sadly, over 50 people have died already. We still do not know the true impact of the psychological and traumatic impact of the hostile environment policy on the minds, bodies and survival of the Windrush generation and other migrants and refugees affected by this policy.

“Justice delayed is justice denied, but the courage to demand change ensures that tomorrow's generation will inherit a fairer world.”

Black Wall St. MediaContributor



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