Diane Abbott has condemned the Home Office’s handling of the Windrush compensation scheme and accused the government of “waiting for this generation to pass away”.
Speaking at a parliamentary debate on Thursday, Abbott said the Home Office’s refusal to hand the scheme over to an independent body showed a lack of respect for the victims of the Windrush Scandal.
MPs were debating a report that found the scheme had paid compensation to just five per cent of the estimated 15,000 eligible, and that 23 people have died before receiving any money.
Campaigners have said the scheme “re-traumatises” victims, and that the fact it is run by the same department responsible for the wrongs of the Windrush scandal stopped victims claiming compensation.
Abbott said: “For ministers to, year after year, ignore what is said to them about the complaints process, ignore the suggestions that people make in good faith, that suggests to me they don’t respect that generation.
“They don’t understand the humiliation this generation feels and clearly it is as if they are waiting for this generation to pass away.”