UK Home Secretary Amber Rudd has recently been at the heart of the Windrush scandal concerning the mistreatment of long-term UK residents, which resulted in her resignation on Sunday amid the pressure exerted on the secretary by the country's opposition and the general public.
Sputnik: Amber Rudd has dramatically resigned as Home Secretary, after repeatedly struggling to account for her role in the unjust treatment of Windrush generation migrants. Taking into account the local elections are only days away… How significant is this departure and what affect will it have on Theresa May's precarious cabinet?
Dr. Monish Bhatia: That issue extend beyond Windrush migrants. If you go through all the media reports and the leaked letter Rudd wrote to the prime minister, she highlighted a ten percent increase. It’s obvious she knew the baseline and previous figures and very clearly established she was aware of the target. Now, this extends beyond Windrush migrants, and they were included in this target, but it also included people like asylum seekers whose cases had been refused that were included in this target. I think it’s quite major and will impact the Conservatives in the upcoming local elections this week.
Sputnik: May was quick to find a replacement for Rudd, one of her closest allies, choosing Sajid Javid, the Housing, Communities and Local Government. Javid said on Monday his most urgent task was to ensure that the so-called Windrush migrants are treated fairly. Strong words from the new home secretary, will this new appointment help control the fall out of the ever worsening Windrush scandal?
Dr. Monish Bhatia: I think one we aren’t highlighting yet is the hostile environment agenda implemented by Theresa May when she home secretary and has been carried on since. The issue is actually structural and the racist, xenophobic policies will continue. Regarding the Sajid Javid appointment, I do not think appointing a south Asian man makes the conservatives progressive. He previously attacked left wing grassroots groups calling ‘neo fascist’, he has indirectly blamed his mother for not learning English sooner enough and he repeatedly screams about this so-called “integration problem”. In a way I feel that he will continue with the racist hostile environment agenda and think that’s deeply problematic. We need to speak about the structural issues that are affecting all migrant groups in this country.
Policies like the ‘Bank Account Check’, ‘the Landlord checks’, continuing with indefinite detention and moving further with chartered flight deportations; I think these are real issues. The conservatives aren’t talking about reversing the hostile environment; the talks are still about maintaining the hostile environment in different ways. As I mentioned Sajid Javid previous records, he’s perfect placed for this position.
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