No more empty apologies for Windrush. Britain has to face the ugly truth about empire, starting with education

No one should be delivering immigration policy without a thorough knowledge of what came before. But it’s not just the government, we need to reform the curriculum, writes Kimberly McIntosh

Unpacking our border obsession


The long-awaited Windrush Lessons Learned Review, published on Thursday, opens with the story of Nathaniel. Nathaniel went on holiday to Jamaica with his daughter in 2001. When they tried to return to the UK, immigration authorities told him he could not come back in.

His passport of 45 years was no longer valid, though it had been when he took a trip there in 1985. He had arrived in the UK as a citizen of the UK and Colonies in the 1950s. In 2010, he would die in Jamaica of prostate cancer. He could not afford the treatment. Nathaniel had every right to be in Britain, so why was his re-entry denied?

Nathaniel was one of the 160 people, mostly of Caribbean descent, who were erroneously detained or deported in what would become known as the Windrush scandal. Up to 8,000 have been caught up in the scandal in myriad ways, suffering great injustice as a result; people made destitute, separated from their families, losing their jobs, homes and identity.

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