HC Deb 31 March 1909 vol 3 cc316-7

I wish to ask the Secretary of State whether his attention has been drawn to the number of newly arrived aliens who present themselves at the Royal London Ophthalmic Hospital for treatment for long-standing trachoma, and to the fact that as many as 90 per cent, of the sufferers from this disease during the six months with which the last report of the hospital dealt were aliens, and to the chairman's recommendation that aliens who had contracted this disease should be prevented from landing in this country; and whether, in view of the fact that this disease was being introduced into this country on an extensive scale by aliens who have not submitted themselves to an inspection at an immigration port, he will consider the expediency of lowering the number of alien immigrants who can be carried in a non-immigrant ship, at all events as concerned vessels bringing aliens to the port of London?


I understand that the statement mentioned in the first part of the question was made by the chairman of the Royal London Ophthalmic Hospital at the recent annual general meeting of the governors. Without altogether accepting as correct the further statement made by the hon. Member, I may say that I have the point under my observation, and that I am asking for further and more exact information as regards the general statements contained in the question.