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Civil Defence Organisation

Volume 464: debated on Thursday 28 April 1949

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department why no directions or guidance as to their duties under the Civil Defence Act, 1948, have yet been issued to local authorities; and whether directions or guidance will be issued in the near future.

Since the passing of the Civil Defence Act, Departments concerned have, in accordance with undertakings given by Minis- ters, been discussing with representatives of the local authorities the general arrangements for reconstituting a Civil Defence organisation. These have made good progress, and my right hon. Friend hopes to lay appropriate regulations before Parliament at an early date.

Were not such instructions issued some time ago for the Armed Forces, with which Civil Defence will have to co-operate? Is it not of great importance that Civil Defence should be prepared to deal with emergencies, and should not instructions be hastened and issued accordingly?

I agree that it is important that we should get out instructions as quickly as possible. My right hon. Friend hopes that the first regulations will be before Parliament before the end of next month.