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Hungarian Refugees

Oral Answers to Questions — Employment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 11th April 1957.

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Photo of Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant , Wokingham 12:00 am, 11th April 1957

asked the Minister of Labour how many interpreters are employed in connection with the Hungarian refugees; and their nationality.

Photo of Mr Iain Macleod Mr Iain Macleod , Enfield West

Three hundred and forty-two interpreters are employed at present either on a full-time or part-time basis. Of these, 188 are British subjects. 124 are Hungarians, and 30 are of other nationalities.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant , Wokingham

Is my right hon. Friend satisfied as to the security status of these interpreters, particularly foreign nationals? Further, where an interpreter has been found suspect for security reasons, is there a close watch to see that, when removed from his post, he or she does not exercise threats or menaces on Hungarian refugees?

Photo of Mr Iain Macleod Mr Iain Macleod , Enfield West

That matter is very much in my mind. My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary has made arrangements for the screening of interpreters from the point of view of security.

Photo of Commander Sir Peter Agnew Commander Sir Peter Agnew , Worcestershire South

Could my right hon. Friend say whether encouragement is being given to refugees to learn English so that the expense of interpreters will no longer be needed?

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant , Wokingham

asked the Minister of Labour how many adult Hungarian, male and female, refugees are now in this country; and how many are in work or under training.

Photo of Mr Iain Macleod Mr Iain Macleod , Enfield West

About 11,500 male and 4,000 female Hungarian refugees over the age of 16 are now in this country. There is no precise information about the number of refugees who are actually in work, but over 7,500 have been placed in employment by the Ministry and over 2,000 have found approved employment by other means. There are 3.550 refugees undergoing training in National Coal Board hostels.

Photo of Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant Lieut-Colonel Hon. Peter Remnant , Wokingham

Quite obviously, we all wish to help these Hungarian refugees but can my right hon. Friend say what arrangements are made to ensure that they do not displace British workpeople?

Photo of Mr Iain Macleod Mr Iain Macleod , Enfield West

We brought them to this country, and the ordinary arrangements have been made with the trade unions to take care of matters of that sort. The trade unions have, on the whole, been very co-operative.