HC Deb 22 July 1935 vol 304 cc1480-1
40. Mr. LOGAN

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether his attention has been called to aliens on British ships, being under three years' contractual agreements, domiciled in this country marrying British women, and at the expiration of their service returning to their own country leaving wife and children chargeable to the Poor Law; and whether he is prepared to make inquiries with a view to remedying this matter?

The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Captain Euan Wallace)

Prior to the hon. Member's speech on the Home Office Vote last week the attention of my Department had not been called to any such cases. If the hon. Member refers to alien seamen domiciled here who are signed on articles opened in this country for a round voyage, the position is that such men are given leave to land for discharge on return of the vessel to the United Kingdom, but there is no power under the Aliens Order, 1920, to prevent them leaving this country of their own accord. If, however, the hon. Member is referring to cases of non-resident alien seamen who may contract marriages with British women during a temporary stay of their ship in port, and are not eligible in the ordinary way for a free discharge in this country, I can only say that to grant any alien seaman a free discharge because of marriage to a British woman would only encourage marriages of convenience and seriously weaken the administration of the Aliens Order. I should of course be glad to discuss with the hon. Member any particular case which he may have in mind.


Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman not aware that a certain shipping company in Liverpool has a hostel in which negroes are domiciled? These people are aliens. They arrive here under special contract. They marry and leave at the end of three years when their contract is finished. They leave their wives and children behind them. I want to know what steps, if any, are to be taken to prevent English women being married here to black men who are not domiciled here and never return to this country after they have left their wives and children here?


If the hon. Gentleman will read my answer, he will see that that case is covered.