HC Deb 21 July 1960 vol 627 cc710-1
14. Lieut.-Colonel Cordeaux

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies what replies he has received from the West Indian Government to his appeals to them to restrict the migration of West Indians to this country.

Mr. J. Amery

My right hon. Friend discussed migration with West Indian Ministers during his recent visit. In general he found them fully aware of the problems involved, and very ready to co-operate with us by continuing their efforts to reduce the flow of migrants to this country.

Lieut.-Colonel Cordeaux

In view of the recent figures which we have had about migration from the West Indies, will not my hon. Friend agree that these discussions have had no practical effect in limiting migration? Does he realise what a desperate and even dangerous problem will face us in many large towns in this country as a result of the present flood of immigration if we should get only a moderate degree of unemployment? Will he consider whether our present policy of relying solely on the efforts of the West Indian Government to discourage emigration are adequate?

Mr. Amery

No, Sir. As my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary said last week, we need to approach with deep caution and care any proposal to change or depart from the traditional open door policy of this country.

Mr. H. Hynd

While agreeing that we have to approach this matter with caution and care, may I ask the hon. Gentleman whether he is aware that only yesterday in one of Her Majesty's courts I had to deal with a Jamaican who had been arrested but was fund unfit to plead and was therefore sent to an institution where he probably will be kept for the rest of his life at the expense of British taxpayers? Must this go on?