Midlands Bishops to join cross-government working group

On Monday 22 June – ‘Windrush Day’ – Home Secretary Priti Patel announced the formation of a new cross-government working group to address the challenges faced by the Windrush generation and their descendants. The working group brings together stakeholders and community leaders with senior representatives from government departments. The group’s aim is to support the government in righting the wrongs suffered by the British Caribbean community, whose first 500 members arrived in the UK on 22 June 1948.

The group will be co-chaired by the Home Secretary and Birmingham-based Bishop Derek Webley of the New Testament Church of God. Bishop Derek was District Bishop for Birmingham and Solihull from 1996 to 2014. He is a former President of the Rotary Club of Birmingham, former Chair of the West Midlands Police Authority and one of the Deputy Lieutenants for the West Midlands.

Bishop Webley said, ‘It’s an honour to be able to serve members of the Windrush generation who have served this country with dignity and pride, and helped to build this country over many years. This Working Group recognises that the work we’re doing can’t be done without the voices of the community, and we will work with them and the government in finding a way forward that would meet the satisfaction of the Windrush community.’

Also appointed to serve on the working-group is Black Country-based Bishop Joe Aldred, who is the Principal Officer for Pentecostal and Multicultural Relations for Churches Together in England. Joe is a Bishop in the Church of God of Prophecy. In addition to his ecumenical work, Bishop Aldred is a writer and broadcaster, providing regular ‘Pause for Thought’ inputs for BBC Radio and having regular slots on UCB Radio.

According to the Home Office, ‘Black communities and wider minority ethnic communities still face injustices, and the government is dedicated to tackling this, including by launching a cross-governmental commission into racial inequality. The Windrush Cross-Government Working Group will also have an instrumental role to play in this work, and in ensuring we address the wider challenges that disproportionately affect people from black and wider minority ethnic backgrounds. The working group will meet quarterly for the duration of the Windrush Compensation Scheme, which is currently open until April 2023.’

To read the Home Office’s announcement, click HERE. To read more about the New Testament Church of God, use THIS LINK. For information about the Church of God of Prophecy, click HERE. The Churches Together in England website is accessible HERE.

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