§ Within twenty-eight days from the date of the passing of this Act the Minister shall by order direct that the Act of 1946 shall have effect forthwith in every district consisting of the whole or part of the area of every local authority in respect of which district an order under the Act of 1946 has not been made theretofore and the Act of 1946 shall thereupon come into force in each of such districts.—[Mr. Janner.]
§ Brought up, and read the First time.
§ 10.12 p.m.
§ Mr. Janner
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."
I move this new Clause in order to point out that there are still a number of 1280 local authorities who have not exercised their right to apply to the Minister for the provisions of the 1946 Act to apply in their districts. I am told, and I believe it to be the fact, that some local authorities refuse to have anything to do with the 1946 Act. It is grossly unfair that in some districts tenants should not have, in consequence of the remiss action on the part of their local authority, the right to bring their case before the tribunal.
This does not entail much difficulty for local authorities; all they had to do was to apply to the Minister, who I am sure would have encouraged them in their applications. It would not perhaps have been necessary to put a tribunal in their own district: another tribunal could have dealt with their cases. I know that the Minister is anxious to get all local authorities in. I do not want to press this if he thinks that they will come in in any case. I do feel, and others feel with me, that this is a matter which ought not to be confined even to the vast majority of authorities; all authorities should see that their tenants are protected.
§ Lieut.-Colonel Elliot
In those engaging stories which we read in our youth about the steppes of Russia we were informed that the wolves usually pursued travellers for many miles over the steppes; from time to time the travellers hurled out one of their babies in the hope of stopping the wolves. The stories go on to explain that the wolves devoured those small morsels and were encouraged by them to pursue the travellers still more hotly, eventually completely devouring the inhabitants of the sledge. I commend this parable to the Minister, for the more he encourages the hon. Member for West Leicester (Mr. Janner) the faster do the wolves follow and the louder is their baying, and I feel that in the event they will completely devour the hopes we have of completing this Measure in a reasonable time tonight. For our part, we are opposed to this new Clause and feel that if it were accepted it would further slow up the promising progress we have made.
§ Question put, and negatived.1281
§ The Chairman
In view of what the right hon. and gallant Member for the Scottish Universities (Lieut.-Colonel Elliot) has just said, I presume he does not desire to move the new Clause standing in his name.