HC Deb 19 May 1960 vol 623 cc1461-3
14. Lieut.-Colonel Cordeaux

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many citizens of the West Indies entered the United Kingdom during 1959, during the first four months of 1959, and during the first four months of 1960, respectively.

19. Mr. N. Pannell

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department the number of immigrants into the United Kingdom from the West Indies, India and Pakistan for the four months ended 30th April, 1960, as compared with the same period of 1959.

The Joint Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. David Renton)

I will, with permission circulate the figures in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Lieut.-Colonel Cordeaux

Will my hon. and learned Friend agree with recent Press reports that the number of West Indian immigrants into this country this year is likely to be a record? If so, will he say whether he feels satisfied that in that case the opportunities for them to get housing accommodation and employment will be adequate in cities such as Nottingham to which they can be expected to go?

Mr. Renton

My hon. and gallant Friend is quite right in saying that the figures for the first four months of this year are higher than in any previous year —indeed, very much higher. The second part of his supplementary question raises broad and separate issues which I could not very well answer at this moment.

Mr. N. Pannell

Will my hon. and learned Friend make further representations to the countries concerned to restrict emigrants from those countries to the United Kingdom, since it appears that the arrangements now made are proving quite ineffective?

Mr. Renton

That is a question for my right hon. Friend the Colonial Secretary.

Mr. Gordon Walker

Is it possible in these figures to distinguish between men and women and children, since it may be that the larger numbers now coming in consist much more of women and children of the men who have come before? If it is possible for him to give such figures, perhaps I could put down a Question, but I do not want to do that if it cannot be answered.

Mr. Renton

I should be grateful to the right hon. Gentleman if he put down a Question

Miss Lee

Will the hon. and learned Gentleman be careful to see that in any steps which he takes there is not even a shadow of racial discrimination?

Mr. Renton

Yes, indeed.

Mr. Dugdale

Can the hon. and learned Gentleman say how these figures of immigration from the West Indies compare with the figures for immigration from Ireland?

Mr. Renton

Not without notice.

Mr. F. Noel-Baker

Why is it thought unnecessary to apply any of the provisions of the Aliens Act to these people while it is thought necessary to apply them to Western Europeans? Is not that an anomalous situation? Is not it anomalous that large numbers of people from backward countries should be admitted to the United Kingdom without any of those complicated procedures which are applied to Western Europeans?

Mr. Renton

The simple answer is that all these people from the West Indies are British subjects while the people from Western Europe come under the Aliens Act.

The following is the information requested:

1959 (whole year) 1959 (first four months) 1960 (first four months)
West Indies 16,400 2,000 9,800
India 3,000 1,000 1,000
Pakistan 900 *—100 *—400
* Net outward balance.