The Windrush scandal got most of Britain talking last year. Black Britons especially seemed to be talking about the immigration system with a frankness that felt refreshing. And rightly so. It is disgraceful that Caribbean people who were invited to build this country after the war are being treated so poorly. Already this year, dozens of Caribbeans have been deported and forced to leave their families behind.
Now more than ever, it is important that we tell their stories loudly and without the shame that so often surrounds discussions of immigration status. Yet, to me, it feels disingenuous to act as if the damage that immigration laws in Britain have on black communities was anything new. Aunties from church giving heartfelt testimonies about finally receiving their papers was simply a fact of my childhood.
After speaking to a black woman who has worked in the field of immigration law for some time, and black women from both the African and Caribbean communities that fought immigration cases lasting years; one thing became clear to me. Now is the perfect time to have a discussion about how to end a vicious recurring cycle that sees black people in Britain as discardable.