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Daily Mirror
Daily Mirror
Sam Blewett & Dave Burke

Suella Braverman accused of 'dangerously flirting with ideologues' over Windrush

Suella Braverman has been accused of "dangerously flirting with ideologues" after her "cruel" decision to drop three key reforms brought in after the Windrush scandal.

Today actor David Harewood branded the decision "awful", while Baroness Floella Benjamin, who chairs the Government's Windrush Commemoration Committee, warned the move will cause "even more pain and hurt".

Ms Braverman axed pledges to establish a migrants' commissioner, increase powers of the independent chief inspector of borders and immigration and hold reconciliation events.

Baroness Benjamin, the entertainer and Lib Dem peer, tweeted: "I was proud to oversee the creation of the National Windrush Monument as it was a way of acknowledging some of the wrongs but the government going back on the Windrush Scandal recommendations is cruel and has created even more pain and hurt."

Actor David Harewood has hit out at the Home Secretary (Birmingham Mail)

And Birmingham-born actor Mr Harewood, whose screen credits include Homeland and Supergirl, told LBC: "Personally I think it's awful. And I think we're dangerously flirting with ideologues right now, who have no compunction to bring people together.

"They're just being defensive when it comes to collaborating, sharing and growing. If we're going to Brexit, and sort of break ourselves off from it, then let's all join in together and make a new identity."

The actor, whose parents moved to the UK in 1957, continued: "I think the likes of Suella, she's a gatekeeper. And once the establishment has someone who looks convenient, they are front and centre.

"Personally, I feel no affiliation with her whatsoever, I don't think her race... we have no similarities at all.

"But I think it's very convenient for the powers that be that she looks like that, she speaks like that. I think in her circles, I think she will probably do very, very well."

Dame Floella Benjamin said Ms Braverman's move will create 'more pain and hurt' (Getty Images)

The criticism came after Wendy Williams, the solicitor who carried out a Windrush inquiry, said she was "disappointed" by the move.

In 2020, then home secretary Priti Patel had originally accepted all 30 of the recommendations made by Ms Williams.

On Thursday, Ms Williams said she was "disappointed" Ms Braverman was dropping "crucial external scrutiny measures", particularly the migrants' commissioner.

A commissioner would be responsible for speaking up for migrants and flagging systemic problems within the UK immigration system.

Ms Braverman, in a written statement to the House of Commons, said external bodies were "not the only source of scrutiny" and that she would look to "shift culture and subject ourselves to scrutiny" rather than follow all the recommendations.

The Windrush scandal emerged in 2018 when British citizens, mostly from the Caribbean, were wrongly detained, deported or threatened with deportation, despite having the right to live in Britain.

Many lost homes and jobs, and were denied access to healthcare and benefits.

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