HC Deb 26 April 1926 vol 194 cc1659-60
63. Lieut.-Colonel ACLAND-TROYTE

asked the Home Secretary whether he is aware that, under the Economy Bill, a woman whose husband dies during March, April, or May is disfranchised for 12 months; and whether he will introduce legislation during this Session to remedy this situation?


The question put by my hon. and gallant Friend is based on an assumption that under the existing law a widow on her husband's death must herself acquire a qualification by occupation of premises throughout the qualifying period. It is by no means certain that this assumption is correct; but supposing that it is, it will be the case, as suggested in the question, that the registration of widows whose husbands die during the three months referred to will be deferred for six months as the result of the abolition of the Spring Register. On the other hand, widows whose husbands die during the months of December, January and February will, by reason of the reduction of the qualifying period, be registered six months earlier than under the present system of two registers a year. The question is one which should be considered by the proposed Committee on the franchise, and, as the Home Secretary promised my hon. and gallant Friend last year, he will see that it is brought to their notice.

Lieut.-Colonel ACLAND-TROYTE

Is it not very undesirable that there should be doubt as to whether these women are allowed to vote or not?


That doubt will certainly be cleared up.


Will the hon. Gentleman consider introducing an Amendment in another place to deal with these particular cases?


A promise has already been made, and I have read it to the House.