To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what steps her Department is taking to reduce waiting times for claimants of the Windrush Compensation Scheme.
10 September 2021
Since April 2019 the Scheme has offered or paid more than £34 million in compensation to members of the Windrush generation. On 21 July the Home Office (HO) published the latest set of data on the Scheme which covers the period to the end of June 2021. During the month of June, the HO paid out £2.4 million in compensation. More than £26 million in compensation has been paid across 776 claims.
In December we overhauled the Scheme and the changes have had an immediate effect on the speed and value of offers of compensation. Since the end of December, we have paid more than eight times the total amount paid previously.
However, the HO recognises that there is more still to do to speed up the time between submission and decision on claims. On 21 July the HO published a redesigned primary claim form which is easier for people to complete, and refreshed caseworker guidance which sets out clearly how caseworkers should apply the balance of probabilities and gather evidence to ensure claimants are only asked to provide the minimum information necessary. Together, these should reduce the time taken to process claims and improve peoples’ experiences of applying to the Scheme.
The HO is also recruiting more case workers. Since the end of April, casework FTE has been increased by seven caseworkers and a team of 14 experienced caseworkers onto the scheme from elsewhere in the HO. The HO is in the process of recruiting a further 15 caseworkers and plan to hold a large reserve list so vacancies created through attrition can be filled more quickly.
The HO is also directing resources to where it is needed most to maximise final decision output. In addition, we are improving the evidence-gathering process, including by revising the data-sharing agreements with other government departments.