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Eulalee Pennant, a Windrush campaigner who appealed that her application for further leave be resolved before time runs out on what little life is left of hers!

The great-grandmother who has been volunteering with the Windrush generation for decades and is now fighting terminal cancer has begs Britain to resolve her immigration status before it’s too late.

The Home Office has refused to expedite the case of a great-grandmother and Windrush campaigner who is suffering from terminal cancer and wants her immigration status resolved before she dies.

64-year old Eulalee Pennant, who has Jamaican heritage and arrived in the UK from 2001 as a student visa holder but her immigration case was stuck in the Home Office backlog for years. It is a well-known fact that the immigration system in this country can be very difficult for those who are not British or Irish. In 2019, Eulalee Pennant was granted discretionary leave to remain in UK based on her family life with her partner Gilford Fraser who is also a UK citizen and Windrush descendant. He arrived from Jamaica in 1968 when he was just 12 years old!

Despite the best efforts of Pennant, her application for further leave to remain in UK was rejected. She has since made a new one and is still waiting on processing from Home Office.

During Pandemic, Eulalee Pennant was working as music performer with the stage name LadyP Lioness and carer but was diagnosed with stage 4 small round cell sarcoma in April. She has been given just months to live by her doctors.

The lack of access to public funds is what hurts most, but Pennant fears that Fraser may be saddled with a huge bill after her death because she has not been charged for her NHS treatment yet. She’s received emails from the hospital’s overseas visitors department asking for proof-of leave to remain in the UK.

The couple lives on the third floor of an older building without any lifts. She’s rarely allowed out because she cannot climb stairs and is housebound, except the times when ambulance crew takes her down for their appointments.

Her MP has been trying to get further leave from the Home Office so that she can stay in UK longer. The home office wrote back saying they would not expedite anything regarding this application even though there was only a little time left for her.

In a letter dated 6 August, officials said that Pennant’s application does not have an exact response time because there are many factors involved in the process. Although they try to get these applications answered as quickly possible; sometimes things may take longer than expected due delays from other tasks or resources needed for processing them at first place.

The letter added that because she was receiving NHS care, officials concluded “it is not appropriate to expedite the application with the reasoning provided” and offered no explanation.

Eulalee Pennant with her partner, Gilford Fraser. Photograph: Teri Pengilley/The Guardian

The Home Office has received a request from family and friends for access to public funds as well as an urgent hurry-up about the processing time before she dies.

Pennant’s life has been difficult from the start both in Jamaica and UK. She experienced many hardships and tragedies in Jamaica, including her son Michael Phillips’ murder after being deported from the UK. In 2018 at the peak of Windrush Scandal-the Home Office detained this patriot for weeks before threatening deportation back towards their native country of Jamaica. She has been a tireless advocate for the Windrush victims, tirelessly fighting to get justice.

Fraser said, “It is hard to even dream of the things she has experienced and scars that will never heal.” As you watch someone cry out in pain with no way for them too get relief from their suffering, is the worst situation.

Pennant said: “If the Home Office would just sort out my case, I could live a million times better than what is currently happening. They have messed with me for so many years and it’s prison-like treatment that is cruel, hostile and it’s racism. “Why me? I don’t deserve this.”

The vocal minority has set up a fund to pay for basics like food and shelter because she has not access to public fund.

Karen Doyle, a justice campaigner and supporter of Pennant’s case has called on the Home Office to grant her temporary leave with recourse to public funds. This simple act would remove all worry concerning whether or not their heating bills will be paid next month; stress caused by fears over being charged medical expenses and other bills.

Home Office sources said that they do not routinely comment on individual cases, but applications are considered at their own merit and the Home Office endeavors to review them as quickly possible.