I had met Kenneth the Easter of 2013 at a presentation by Leytonstone Library detailing the various Windrush stories. Kenneth had come to the UK aged four with his mother who had answered the Empire’s call for HELP from its Caribbean citizens.
Kenneth recanted how bitterly cold it had been, for a boy from the Caribbean without suitable clothing for the English weather. “I was lucky to not catch pneumonia!” Whilst Kenneth had to endure the cold, being picked on at school, on the streets by children and adults alike. His mother Doris was also being unappreciated and disrespected by patients she cared for, by being kicked, punched, scratched and spat on. Then was rewarded for ‘complaining’ by being placed in the infirmary, cleaning out bedpans! Even though the police brutalised Kenneth and his friends for being abused and attacked by other white citizens, Kenneth and his mother graciously continued to endure the deplorable behaviour and poor living standards. Through all of this, Doris managed to serve the country and its people, in the NHS, for nearly 40 years before her retirement and death. Kenneth also went on to serve the country in the army for seven years, however, the hostile treatment he received led him to leave and serve the people of the ‘Empire’ on London’s trusted transport system, which he did for 35 years diligently, like his mother.
Fast forward to 2014 Kenneth’s daughter was getting married and wanted to do so in picturesque Jamaica. Kenneth had never left England since he arrived in 1952, but this happy occasion had unfortunately started a journey that has now left Kenneth in a detention centre wondering, on the eve of a night flight to Jamaica by deportation, why has the country that he and his mother served so diligently turned her back on them? Even though a court injunction was won on Monday 10th of February 2019 to stop the deportation of 50 British citizens to Jamaica, the government still deported another 50 citizens to the same destination. Whatever way it is spun the governments handling and treatment of British citizens from the Caribbean that came to the UK during the Windrush period, has been nothing short of disgusting. How the British Government could keep such a disgraceful law and promise made almost 200 years ago, which meant that we the current British taxpayers in 2015, helped to finally finish paying the slave owners compensation for THEIR loss due to the abolition of slavery in 1833, but, could so easily go back and renege on a promise made only 70 years ago to their citizens in the Empire!
This whole scandal has not only highlighted the disproportionate treatment that Black Brits still face, as this hasn’t happened to any other group of that time. Did all of the World War II survivors come to the UK on passports?
This badly managed issue has shown us who the government are. Spinning things to suit their narrative, like ‘only deporting foreign criminals’.
Agreeing with Jeremy Corbyn the Ex-Labour leader, he once asked: “If there was a young white boy with blonde hair, who later dabbled in class A drugs, and conspired with a friend to beat up a journalist, would they deport that boy?
“Or is it one rule for young black boys from the Caribbean, and another for white boys from the US?”
Having now known a bit about Kenneth and Boris Johnson our Prime Minister, who was also not born in the UK, I know who poses more of a danger to the public and so should be deported.
— To date, only 60 people and the sum of £360,000 has been paid out to the victims out of an estimated fund of £500m!