1980s >> 1980 >> no-913-september-1980

50 Years Ago: Labour Government Tells The Unemployed To Emigrate

We recall how the Labour Party cried to high heaven when the Tories and Liberals told the unemployed to get out of the country and look for work elsewhere. Mr. Tom Shaw, at present Minister for War, was suitably ironical eighteen months ago concerning the “ecstasies” of the Imperialists” about the development of distant parts of the Earth”. The last Conservative Government set up a transfer board to move unemployed miners to imaginary areas where jobs were vacant. How the Labour Party scoffed at the idea of solving unemployment by moving the unemployed from one depressed area to another.

But now the Labour Government, according to the Daily Herald of 12th August, is considering a big Empire settlement plan by which the unemployed will be employed on development schemes in the Dominions. So Mr. Lansbury and the Labour Government have nothing else to offer to the unemployed than to ship them off to the Dominions, in spite of the fact that the Canadian Government and the Australian Labour Government are faced with alarming and continuous unemployment of their own and firmly declare their determination not to receive Great Britain’s surplus workers.

From an editorial “Labour Government’s Solution — Unemployed to Emigrate”, in the Socialist Standard, September 1930.