The Bishop of Chelmsford asked a question on the potential appointment of a migrants commissioner, during a debate on the Windrush Lessons Learned Review on 12th January 2022:
The Lord Bishop of Chelmsford: My Lords, many of the recommendations in the Windrush Lessons Learned Review also have implications for how the UK should steer its current refugee and asylum policy: recommendation 9 concerning the creation of a migrants’ commissioner, recommendation 19 regarding direct contact with migrants and recommendation 25 requiring consideration of risks to vulnerable groups or individuals. What assurances can the Minister provide that there will not be a repeat of the mistakes made with the Windrush generation, this time with asylum seekers and refugees, and can he comment on any progress made on recommendation 9 and the appointment of a migrants’ commissioner?
Lord Murray of Blidworth (Con): I thank the right reverend Prelate for that question. As to the last point, I am afraid I cannot comment on the leaks in the Guardian, but on the first point, I can reassure the House that we are certainly very alive to the issues that the right reverend Prelate raises. The Windrush generation was rightly identified as British and had a right to be in this country. That remains separate and distinct from the enforcement policies on individuals who have no right to reside in the United Kingdom. It is only right that the Government do what they can to protect our borders and enforce the Immigration Rules. Successive Governments have done this, in line with public expectations. Wendy Williams’s Windrush Lessons Learned Review is not about being soft in our objective to protect the country or our borders. The Windrush scandal was about the appalling treatment of those who had a perfect right to be in this country. They were not here illegally. It is only right that the Government do what they can to protect our borders and enforce the Immigration Rules.
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