Czech Airman (Naturalisation Application)

Oral Answers to Questions — Civil Defence – in the House of Commons on 19th November 1942.

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Photo of Mr Daniel Lipson Mr Daniel Lipson , Cheltenham

asked the Home Secretary whether the Czech subject, of whose name he has been informed, who has been in this country since 1935, including five terms at Cambridge University, who is a sergeant in the Royal Air Force and obtained his wings in Rhodesia, can have his application for naturalisation granted?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

No, Sir. There are many foreigners who are giving direct and valuable help to the war effort either by service in His Majesty's Forces or in other ways; and the consideration and investigation of applications from all such persons would involve so much work both for my Department and the police that I should not feel justified in undertaking it at a time when everything possible must be done to economise in man-power. The case in question cannot be distinguished from many others.

Photo of Mr Daniel Lipson Mr Daniel Lipson , Cheltenham

Can the right hon. Gentleman' say that no naturalisations have been granted since the war?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

Generally speaking, that is so. The principal exception is in the case of British-born women who have married aliens.

Photo of Mr Daniel Lipson Mr Daniel Lipson , Cheltenham

Will the right hon. Gentleman give high priority after the war to applications for naturalisation of all men who have served in the Forces?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

I think it would be wrong for me to commit myself now to what is to happen after the war to refugees who came to this country.

Photo of Mr Rhys Davies Mr Rhys Davies , Westhoughton

Will the Home Secretary be good enough to inquire into the practice in America, where, I understand, they are daily joining the American Forces or are being conscripted and are in the end automatic American citizens?

Photo of Mr Herbert Morrison Mr Herbert Morrison , Hackney South

I am willing to do so, but our policy must be settled in the light of British considerations.

Photo of Mr Daniel Lipson Mr Daniel Lipson , Cheltenham

If a man is good enough and loyal enough to fight for this country, ought not he to be given naturalisation?