P32. Refugee Children

[Letter to The Times, 9 February 1939, p. 10]

9 February 1939

To the Editor of The Times

Sir,--May I add one postscript to your admirable leading article on the subject of refugee children? [1] In each year during the present decade the number of newly born children in England and Wales has fallen short by about 200,000 of the number required barely to maintain the population at its present level.

How trifling are the numbers mentioned in the most generous proposals to admit refugees compared with this annual deficiency in our newly born! By the time that the refugee children are educated we shall already have entered upon the period of declining numbers and shall be feeling the acute strains and stresses to which that process will give rise. It will be the beginning also of a long-drawn-out epoch in which aged people will be in the great majority and young married couples few and far between. If these children of our adoption then show the makings of good citizenship I venture to think that we shall hear no more of their "ultimate emigration elsewhere."

I am, &c.,

R. F. Harrod.

Christ Church, Oxford.

  1. 1. The Times, "The Work of Rescue", 3 February 1939, p. 13.


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