HC Deb 24 June 1901 vol 95 cc1208-9

I beg to ask the President of the Board of Trade whether he is aware that the foreign population of the United Kingdom received last year a permanent addition of upwards of 14,000 aliens, in addition to 15,000 foreign sailors coming as passengers, and of whom no record is kept when they leave as members of the crews of outgoing British ships, and that there was an increase of over 800 per cent. in the number of Roumanians, of 39 per cent. in the number of Italians, and of 25 per cent. in the number of Russians and Poles arriving in this country, mainly for settlement in the East End of London; and seeing that 19,535 of these alien immigrants were in such a condition hat they had to be relieved by the Jewish Board of Guardians and the Russo-Jewish Conjoint Committee, and 2,015, including 1,100 Russians and Poles, had to be supported by the poor rates of London, whether His Majesty's Government will deal with this matter, having regard to the difficulty of housing our own population in east and south London.


The figures in the first paragraph of the question are approximately correct, but it cannot be stated that the Roumanians, Italians, Russians, and Poles arriving in this country came mainly for settlement in east London, a large number of them being known to have proceeded abroad. The figure (19,535) stated in the question as the number relieved by certain voluntary Jewish organisations appears to represent the total number of persons, native and alien, assisted by those organisations during the last year. The number of aliens who arrived in this country in 1900 and were assisted in that year by the agencies referred to may be estimated at about 4,000. During the year 1900 relief was given to 2,015 aliens (including 1,100 Russians and Poles) by London boards of guardians, but these figures included many persons who had arrived in this country in former years, and more than half of them received medical relief only. I am unable to make any promise as to legislation.