The Home Office (The Department) and its agencies (UK Visas and Immigration, Immigration Enforcement and Border Force) manage the UK immigration system: setting immigration policy; deciding who has the right to stay; and encouraging and enforcing the removal of illegal migrants. Between 1948 and 1973, nearly 600,000 Commonwealth citizens came to live and work in the UK with the right to remain indefinitely. But many were not given any documentation to confirm their immigration status, and the Home Office kept no records. In the last ten years, successive governments have introduced the “compliant environment” where the right to live, work and access services including benefits and bank accounts in the UK is only available to people who can demonstrate their eligibility to do so. Towards the end of 2017 the media began to report stories of members of the Windrush generation being denied access to public services, being detained in the UK or at the border, or being removed from, or refused re-entry to, the UK. This has been referred to as the Windrush scandal.
Published: 6 March 2019