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To: The Home Secretary Priti Patel MP

Help Shankea obtain indefinite leave to stay in the UK


Dear Supporters, Shankea has sent you all this message:

"It is with great delight that I can inform you all that I have been granted my legal right to remain in the UK. After 18 years of applications, rejections and tears, I can now breathe and live. I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to each and every one of you who signed and shared the petition. It goes without saying, I have been through a lot and am currently processing the news. As I embark on my new journey, please keep me in your thoughts and prayers."

It is truly great news that Shankea can now, at the age of 31, return to her education or get a job; something she could only previously dream of. She no longer has to fear that knock on the door. But it should never have happened. The system that should have taken care of her, and thousands of others, is broken. Today, we rejoice for Shankea. Tomorrow, we will remember the others who are still fighting for their freedom to live in the country they call home.

Help Shankea obtain indefinite  leave to stay in the UK

Shankea came to this country in 2002 aged 12, following her Father and Grandfather, a Windrush immigrant. She is now 29 years old.
She has applied for indefinite leave to remain with her relatives on numerous occasions and each time has been rejected. Please help Shankea remain in the UK where she has spent most of her life.

Why is this important?

Shankea lives in constant fear of having to leave the country she has called her home for 18 years. “I was 12 when I came here. I was a young girl dependent on my parents" Since leaving school, she has not been allowed to work. “I’ve never claimed benefits and I don’t have a criminal record. I was not given the opportunity to obtain my degree, to work. What’s the point in existing? I’m a strong woman, but it’s hard. It feels so cruel.” Shankea contributes to her community by doing voluntary work.

Her mother passed away in Jamaica. Shankea missed her Mother’s funeral in Jamaica as she feared she wouldn’t be able to return to the UK.

Her most recent Home Office application was declined on the grounds that she could maintain her relationships in the UK online.

This inhumane treatment is a result of the Government's hostile environment towards Windrush families. As a UK community, we can stand by Shankea and support her by making our voices heard through this petition.


Thanks a million to everyone who has so far signed the petition to help my friend Shankea.

It's amazing to me how she has coped with her unstable situation throughout her 20's, and incredible that the Government can contemplate sending her to Jamaica; a place she doesn't know any more. The Home Office say her Father can visit her in Jamaica but they are not taking his illness into consideration.

Shankea lived with her Father as a child in London. She eventually moved to Peterborough to live with two Aunties who were able to support her. She has lived here ever since with an incredible 'surrogate Mum,' someone who has 'literally taken me under her wing,' many cousins, friends and a church community.

The Government wants to deport her to Jamaica. A place where she has no close relatives and nowhere to stay. She asks "Where would I live? Where would I start? What would people think of me? I don't think I would fit in there. I am very outspoken here in England, but this is frowned upon in Jamaica."

How would it feel to be sent away to live in a strange place away from everything & everyone you have grown up with? It is a cruel and inhumane act for any Government to consider, and would lead to psychological pain and suffering.

Shankea worked hard at school and achieved three A Levels in Government & Politics, Sociology & English Literature. She applied to University to study Politics and Sociology and was accepted at all five Universities she applied to. She could not take up a place because she couldn't access a student loan due to not having a National Insurance Number.

It was at this point, now 11 years ago, that Shankea's fight to remain in the UK started.

Shankea has no way of earning a living. She desperately wants to work in the country that provided her education, but she hasn't got the correct papers. Her 'surrogate Mum' provides for her. Her Aunts, church community and friends help her afford to live, but she is constantly living on the breadline. She lives by a strict budget, on 'sheer blessings & luck.' She volunteers as a youth worker and attends access courses.

Shankea is a proud young woman who deserves better. She says, " I could have got myself pregnant in order to stay, but that's not me, I don't want to do it that way."

The judge has told Shankea she 'doesn't have enough family life here.' BUT WHAT IS A FAMILY IF IT'S NOT A CLOSE KNIT COMMUNITY OF RELATIVES AND FRIENDS?

Shankea signs a list every month to prove to the home office she is still in Peterborough and complying. She insists on doing everything 'aboveboard.' All her important documents are with the home office: birth certificate; Jamaican Passport; school papers; leaving certificates; medical records; everything to mark every year she has been here.

Part of Shankea's identity is in a file miles away.

Shankea has made her life here and wants to stay. All her friends and family want her to stay.

Please help her by signing and sharing this petition to every one you can think of so it flies off the scale!


Thank You


Maps © Stamen; Data © OSM and contributors, ODbL


Reasons for signing

  • I am married to a moroccan man who is refused even to visit me as he doesmt own property in morocco. He has a very successful business there but just doesnt own property. Since when were americans for example required to own property for a tourist visa?? We are MARRIED. This hostile environment must stop
  • Raised here, went to school here, 17 years in the country.... this is a travesty...
  • I want to help,. Please can you set up a crowd fund me web page to get the right help with a good lawyer, Thanks


2020-12-26 10:16:44 +0000

Petition is successful with 3,185 signatures

2019-07-27 19:04:38 +0100

Today 27th July, we collected signatures at a 'Black History Month" event in Peterborough. A very joyful if rainy event. Thanks to the Peterborough Trades Union Council for accommodating us on their stall and helping to collect signatures.

2019-06-18 21:05:00 +0100

Shankea is on BBC2 TV on Thursday June 20th at 9pm on a documentary programme called
'Who Should Get to Stay in the UK?' Please support her by watching. Thank You x

2019-05-25 16:04:06 +0100

Hi All,
Shankea now has a gofundme page to help her with Home Office and solicitor fees. Please click on the link below and donate if you can. Thank you!

2019-03-12 16:28:12 +0000

On Monday March 11th, Shankea Stewart was proud to represent the Women's Resource Centre at the House of Lords. It was a showcase event to celebrate the Women's Leadership for Social Change Programme and International Women's Day. Shankea gave a speech about her work mentoring young women and the ways in which women can be empowered in spite of adversity.

2018-12-17 19:51:32 +0000

Watch this video of Shankea where she explains how the threat of deportation has affected her.

2018-11-23 16:02:29 +0000

1,000 signatures reached

2018-11-18 08:18:23 +0000

500 signatures reached

2018-10-26 19:22:52 +0100

100 signatures reached

2018-10-26 15:20:12 +0100

50 signatures reached

2018-10-26 14:37:37 +0100

25 signatures reached

2018-10-26 13:52:52 +0100

10 signatures reached