by Sarah Bates
Anti-racists are stepping up pressure on the Tories as revelations show ministers’ contempt for the Windrush Generation, and home secretary Amber Rudd’s lies are exposed.
Rudd denied this week that her department had ever had targets for the numbers of people deported. She said she had “not approved, seen or cleared any targets for removal”.
Speaking in parliament, Rudd said she would “never support a policy that puts targets ahead of people.”
But just 24 hours later she was forced to backtrack and admit that some targets were used. Rudd has been forced to issue a series of grovelling apologies, each more snivelling and false than the last.
But this is borne out of fear for her own career trajectory—not out of genuine remorse for the Tories’ racist “hostile environment” for immigration policy. She admitted to journalists this week she was “just thinking about staying the game”.
And on Friday a Home Office leak showed that her department boasted they exceed their target of 12,800 “enforced returns” in 2017-18. Rudd and then immigration minister Brandon Lewis were both copied in to the memo.
Panicking Tories have said that all problems from the immigration status of the Windrush Generation will be solved in two weeks. But this is the same government that promised to rehouse victims of the Grenfell fire, some of whom are still living in hotel accommodation almost a year on.
The Windrush scandal presents a real crisis for the Tories. It has revealed the racism at the heart of their policies.
The Tories have always thought that attacking migrants and pushing racism would win them votes.
Now they find that millions of people are rightly revolted by what they have done.
Stand Up To Racism has called a demonstration on Saturday 5 May in London demanding justice after the Windrush scandal. Its demands include an end to deportations, no hostile environment for any immigrants—and Rudd must go.
And the day after, Sunday 6 May, will see a demonstration against the racist Democratic Football Lads Alliance who plan to march alongside fascist Tommy Robinson in London.
It will be a weekend of protest—against state racism and the racism on the streets.
The fight against racism and punitive border controls cannot start and end with the Windrush Generation. It must be part of a wider fight against the system that makes scandals such as this one possible and part of a battle for open borders.