HC Deb 25 May 1938 vol 336 c1207
45. Colonel Wedgwood

asked the Prime Minister which Minister is responsible for the work of the committee dealing with the conditions of admission and employment of political refugees in this country, and to whom should questions dealing with this work of the committee be addressed.

The Prime Minister

If the right hon. Member is referring to the Co-ordinating Committee for Refugees mentioned by me in reply to a question by the hon. Member for the Combined English Universities (Miss Rathbone) on 23rd May, this committee is a purely voluntary body which is not responsible to any Government Department. Any communications relating to the work of the committee should, therefore, be addressed to the committee direct, but any specific proposals which it might make for the admission of refugees to this country would, of course, be a matter for my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary.

Colonel Wedgwood

Has the Home Secretary no representation on the committee? Has he any power to make representations to the committee?

The Prime Minister

No, Sir, I think the Home Secretary has no representation on the committee, which is a purely voluntary body.

Mr. Mander

Is there not an interdepartmental committee, representing the Home Office and the Foreign Office, dealing with the question of refugees?

The Prime Minister

I should like notice of that question.

Mr. Leach

Will the Prime Minister consider appointing the Chancellor of the Exchequer as chairman of this body, seeing that he is the most distinguished of the political refugees?