Rudd says all Commonwealth citizens will be able to contact the new Home Office team to help establish their right to stay in the UK, not just people from the West Indies.
Simon Hoare, a Conservatie, asks if the Home Office will compensate applicants who have already paid for legal advice to help them establish their right to stay.
Rudd says she will consider this.
Rudd says that, if people have been in this country for decades, there will be proof of that. The Home Office will help “Windrush generation” applicants to find this evidence, she says.
Joanne Cherry, the SNP’s justice and home affairs spokeswoman, also she thinks the Home Office’s decision to create a “hostile environment” for immigrants exacerbated the problem. But she says she hopes she detected in Rudd’s response (see 3.54pm) a sign that she will think again. She urges Rudd to drop the “hostile environment” approach.
Rudd says no one from ‘Windrush generation’ will be deported because of lack of paperwork
Diane Abbott, the shadow home secretary, says there are few more patriotic groups in the UK than those from the West Indies.
She says hundreds of them have been trying for some time to sort out this problem. She says they have spent money on this.
She demands an assurance that there will be no deportations.
She says the Windrush migrants deserve an apology.
The issue of compensation needs to be considered, she says.
She also backs David Lammy’s analysis (see 3.54pm); the government’s decision to create a “hostile environment” for immigrants is to blame, she says.
Rudd says she can confirm that no one from the “Windrush generation” will be deported because of lack of paperwork.
- Rudd says no one from the “Windrush generation” will be deported because of lack of paperwork.
Labour MP David Lammy says government immigration policy to blame for what has happened to ‘Windrush generation’
David Lammy, the Labour MP, says the link between this country and the countries of the West Indies is extremely close. He says 25,000 people from the Caribbean served alongside British troops in the first and second world wars.
He says Rudd’s statement did not go far enough. She should not be leaving it up to high commissioners to say how many people have been deported. The Home Office deported them, he says. It should know.
He demands to know how many people have been deported, and how many have lost jobs or access to services because they have not had the right paperwork.
She says this is a “day of national shame”.
He says it was the Home Office, under Theresa May, that decided to create a “hostile environment” for immigrants. He goes on:
This is a day of national shame and it has come about because of a hostile environment policy that was begun under her prime minister.
Let us call it as it is. If you lay down with dogs, you get fleas, and that is what has happened with this far right rhetoric in this country.
- Labour MP David Lammy says government immigration policy to blame for what has happened to ‘Windrush generation’.
Rudd says she accepts that sometimes the Home Office has become “too concerned with policy and strategy” and that sometimes it “loses sight of individuals”.
She says some of the stories have been “terrible to hear”.
I am concerned that the Home Office has become too concerned with policy and strategy, and sometimes lose sight of the individual.
This is about individuals, and we have seen the individual stories, and they have been, some of them, terrible to hear, and that is why I have acted.
But she says she is not aware of any specific cases of individuals being deported in these circumstances.
I am not aware of any specific cases of a person being removed in these circumstances. That is why I have asked the high commissioners if they know of any, that they should bring it to me. And I would ask anybody here if they know of any such circumstances, they should bring them to the Home Office.
- Rudd says she is not aware of anyone being deported because they lack “Windrush generation” paperwork.
Urgent question on ‘Windrush generation’
Amber Rudd, the home secretary, is now responding to the “Windrush generation” UQ.
She says she recognises the concern felt by some in this generation. She does not want them to feel unwelcome. She says she is “very sorry” for any confusion that has arisen.
While most people have the right documentation to show they can be here, some do not.
So she is setting up a dedicated team to help, she says.
She says no one should be left out of pocket, so no one will have to pay for this documentation.
She says a dedicated web page will be set up.
And she says she will be meeting high commissioners this week to discuss this.
Leaving a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg, Simon Coveney, Irish Tánaiste and minister for foreign affairs and trade, suggested that Ireland had concerns over the airstrikes. He said:
There was a lot of support for France and Britain and virtually all the ministers said they agreed and endorse the action that they took.
We said we understood it but we much rather have seen action taken with a UN mandate.
This is from my colleague Paul Johnson.
The Telegraph’s Jack Maidment reckons he has worked out what is going on with the Syria debate.
Rudd says new Home Office team will try to ensure ‘Windrush generation’ get claims sorted within 2 weeks
Rudd is answering another question about the “Windrush generation”.
The vast majority of people will have the right documentation, she says.
But she says she is setting up a dedicated team to help those who do not have the right paperwork.
The team will be tasked with helping these applicants demonstrate they are entitled to live in the UK and will be tasked with resolving cases within two weeks of the evidence being provided.
They will work across government to help these applicants prove they have been working and living in the UK and of course no one should be left out of pocket as they go through this process, and so given the uniqueness of this situation the group find themselves in, I intend to ensure that the group will not pay for this documentation.
- Rudd says new Home Office team will try to ensure “Windrush generation” applicants get the paperwork they need within two weeks.
She confirms she will waive the £229 fee.
Labour’s Lucy Powell says the problem highlights the “over-pervasive” nature of the Home Office. It is going after soft targets, she says.
Rudd denies this. She says it was the Labour government that introduced the labour market tests that are generating the problems.
(For an alternative view as to who was to blame, see Colin Yeo at 12.26pm.)
Rudd says she is ‘sorry’ for ‘appalling’ treatment of some Windrush migrants
Amber Rudd, the home secretary, has now answered a direct question about the “Windrush generation”.
- Rudd tells MPs she is setting up a new taskforce to ensure that people from the “Windrush generation” who need to prove that they can stay in the UK get a “swift response” when they go to the Home Office for help.
- She says the fees involved will be waived. (The standard fee is £229.) People should be able to secure their rights without charge, she says.
Yvette Cooper, the Labour chair of the Commons home affairs committee, challenges her about Caroline Nokes’s comment about people being deported because they lacked the appropriate paperwork. (See 12.57am.)
- Rudd says she is “sorry” because the treatment of some Windrush migrants has been “appalling”.
I do not want any of the Commonwealth citizens who are here legally to be impacted in the way they have.
Frankly, some of the ways they have been treated has been wrong, has been appalling and I am sorry.
That’s why I am setting up a new area in my department to ensure that we have a completely new approach to how their situation is regularised.
But she refused to confirm that some people have been deported in error.
This is what Amber Rudd, the home secretary, said in response to Anna Soubry’s question about the “Windrush generation”. (See 3.04pm.)
I am very concerned about how the Windrush generation have been treated. I will be making some further statements about what we are going to do about it and [Soubry] is right to identify that they have the right to be there and I’m going to make sure that the Home Office deliver on that.
In Home Office questions Anna Soubry, the Conservative pro-European, has just asked Amber Rudd, the home secretary, how she could be sure that EU nationals who apply to stay in the UK after Brexit will be treated properly given the experience faced by the “Windrush generation”.
Rudd said she would be talking about this in more detail in her response to the UQ at 3.30pm, but she said that these people were entitled to stay in the UK and that she wanted to ensure this happened.