HC Deb 18 July 1946 vol 425 cc1373-4
35. Mr. Yates

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why the British passport control officer in Vienna has declined to authorise a visa to Mr. Johann and Mrs. Karoline Gräbner, 5, Margaretenstrasse, Vienna, for the purpose of visiting their son in this country under the Distressed Relatives in Europe Scheme; and if he will reconsider the application with a view to the visa being granted to Mrs. Gräbner.

Mr. Ede

The distressed relatives scheme applies to cases where a man and wife living together abroad are unable to look after and support one another, and are in special need of filial care. These persons are not infirm, and they have a married daughter and, between them, three brothers and three sisters in Austria. They have not suffered from Nazi oppression, and there is no reason to distinguish them from numerous other enemy nationals whose circumstances are similar. I regret that they cannot be regarded as having a special claim to come to this country for protection and help.

Mr. Yates

Does the Secretary of State in such cases consider it fair that poor people in this country, like this son, should have to get a certificate from a Commissioner of Oaths, for which they have to pay a guinea; and that the parents have to get a certificate abroad from a doctor, which also costs them their last money? Does he think this quite fair?

Mr. Ede

The list of categories of persons I was willing to consider was read out in this House, has been published, and is generally available; and if people who are clearly not within the categories put forward claims, I really cannot be held responsible for that.