§ LORD JOHN RUSSELL
In rising, Sir, to move that you do leave the chair that the House may resolve itself into Committee on the Poor Relief Bill, I beg to express a hope that my hon. Friends who have given notices of Motions to be made previous to going into Committee, will not press them, and interfere to prevent you leaving the chair. In the next place, I wish, for the satisfaction of my own feelings, to allude to the noble and munificent subscription for the relief of the destitute poor in Ireland, which has been raised in the United States of America. I think that it is not unworthy of me, as a British subject, in this the House of Commons, to express my extreme gratification, that, mindful of a common origin with ourselves, the people of the United States have in such a charitable spirit exerted themselves 215 to raise such large sums for the object I mentioned.
§ House went into Committee.
§ On Clause 1 (relief to destitute persons) being put,
§ MR. POULETT SCROPE
said, that he intended to move, as an Amendment, to leave the following words out of the clause—"as are permanently disabled from labour by reason of old age, infirmity, or bodily or mental defect, and destitute children." If the word permanently was continued on the clause, three-fourths of the infirm persons in Ireland would be excluded from relief.
§ SIR G. GREY
did not agree with his hon. Friend as to the number of persons who would be affected in the manner which he had described. Perhaps the word "permanently" might not be absolutely necessary; but it still might be well to preserve it to make a distinction between the claim to permanent out-door relief, or to relief for a casualty. The nature of the medical charities which existed in Ireland should also be recollected; and he might add, that a measure for their extension was under the consideration of his hon. and learned Friend the Solicitor General for Ireland, which would be a much better course to adopt than the enlarging their claim.
§ MR. P. SCROPE
was satisfied, if equal out-door relief was not given to the destitute in Ireland as to the same class in this country, that it would produce an influx of the Irish destitute poor in England.
§ SIR H. W. BARRON
remarked, that it appeared that the sympathy of the hon. Gentleman for the Irish poor arose from the circumstance that their condition might affect the English ratepayer. He hoped the Irish people would not be gulled by such a mark of sympathy for them.
§ SIR J. GRAHAM
thought that it would be better to proceed in the way proposed than to give a permanent right of relief to all the destitute out of the workhouses. The term "permanently" was found in the Poor Removal Bill of last year. He thought that in one or two respects this clause stopped short of the necessity of the case. The noble Lord (Lord Courtenay) below him had given notice of an Amendment, by which widows having children dependent on them, should be entitled to relief out of the workhouse. He thought that this ought to be adopted. The hon. Mem- 216 ber for Limerick had alluded to the Medical Relief Act passed last year, and had suggested that that Act should be renewed and be made permanent. He (Sir James Graham) would recommend the noble Lord and the Government to adopt that suggestion.
§ LORD JOHN RUSSELL
said, that the case suggested, of a man who had had his leg cut off, was one of those cases that would come under the category of permanent disability, and, therefore, under the provisions of the Act. As to the Act referred to by the right hon. Baronet the Member for Dorchester, that right hon. Gentleman would recollect that it was only a measure adopted for particular times. The Bill of last year was under consideration at present; and, if it were thought necessary, a clause of that Bill could be drafted from it and inserted in the present. As to the recommendation of the hon. Member for Stroud, who sat behind him, he felt very great objections to extending the measure as proposed. What he understood that hon. Gentleman to propose was, that a person suffering under temporary sickness should be entitled to receive temporary relief; and, in case the father of a family should suffer from temporary sickness, relief should be given to the family. He considered that kind of relief, which he admitted was given in England, was a source of very great abuse; and he was afraid that in Ireland it would be a source of still greater. It formed no part of the original purpose or intention of the law in England, nor was it part of its general administration originally. He objected to the mixing up of the power of giving relief to the destitute, with giving relief to labourers in the receipt of wages. It had sometimes happened that a weakly, sickly child, or one not in strong health, had been reckoned as a sick child; and, on that ground, relief had been given to the family of a labouring man in the actual receipt of wages. A case of the kind had come under his observation the other day, when, in the course of conversation with a member of a board of poor-law guardians, the gentleman told him that relief had been given to the family of a labouring man under cover of the illness of one of his children. He (Lord J. Russell) said to the gentleman, "And was the child really sick?" to which the reply was, "Oh, we made it sick for the purpose of giving the relief."
MR. V. SMITH
did not agree with the 217 right hon. Baronet the Member for Dorchester, in taking the definition of the Poor Relief Act, for although there was great difficulty found in interpreting that Act generally, he believed there was as much doubt as to the meaning of "permanent disability" as about any part of that Act. He recommended that the word "permanent" be left out altogether in the clause then under discussion. He entirely disagreed from the noble Lord who had just sat down, that the out-door relief to sick persons was the worst part of the English Poor Law; on the contrary, he thought it the best part. One of the hardest cases under that poor law was, that when a man was temporarily prevented from maintaining his family, they were forced into the workhouse, and compelled to sell all their goods before they were relieved. When the poor fellow recovered and came out, he had no home, and was completely ruined. With regard to the case stated by the noble Lord, it was a complete fraud; and if such cases were not met by the vigilance of boards of guardians, such boards were of no use whatever.
§ MR. ROSS
thought the noble Lord at the head of the Government had given a sufficient reason for retaining the word permanent, in stating that it would open the door to great abuses. If hon. Members had spent a few months in acting as members of boards of guardians in Ireland, they would have seen that already there were great abuses and trickery. To strike out the word would be productive of a great deal of mischief.
§ SIR W. CLAY
took the same view of the question as the hon. Member for Northampton (Mr. V. Smith), with respect to the advantage of relieving temporary sickness out of doors, rather than compelling the hard-working, industrious poor to sell up and go into the workhouse; but, more than that, it was a most expensive and extravagant mode of relief for the ratepayers. Instead of a small weekly relief for a short period, the whole family were forced into the house and made paupers for ever.
§ LORD COURTENAY
thought retaining the word "permanently" would compel boards of guardians to resort to such tricks as that described by the noble Lord.
§ MR. SHARMAN CRAWFORD
hoped the noble Lord would concede the point; and, also, that he would state his opinion as to the suggestion that widows should also have out-door relief.
§ MR. MUNTZ
said, that if the word were 218 to be retained, it would be as well to decide what "permanent" meant. Any man who resided in a large town, and saw how the poor law was worked, or how it was attempted to be worked, must be aware of the great injustice done to the ratepayers by the workhouse test being applied by hard-hearted guardians, of whom there were too many, in cases where the heads of families were disabled by temporary sickness; and it was quite heart-rending to see the effects of this test on the industrious but struggling poor.
§ MR. HENLEY
said, the right hon. Member for Dorchester had attempted to carry the House along with him, by stating that the word "permanently" was already inserted in another Act. But the right hon. Baronet must have been aware that it had about as much relation to the present question as a horse chestnut to a chestnut horse. The Act the right hon. Baronet quoted, related only to the removal of paupers, not to their relief. If the reasoning of the noble Lord opposite (Lord J. Russell) was worth anything at all—namely, that because out-door relief would be liable to abuse, and therefore it ought not to be granted—it was a strong argument against having a poor law at all, because there might be cases of abuse.
§ SIR H. W. BARRON
said, that if the word were not retained, it would lead to great fraud and abuse, in consequence of the difficulty of ascertaining the particulars of the cases where relief was applied for.
§ MR. NEWDEGATE
asked whether there were not strong reasons why the poor who were temporarily disabled should not be forced into the workhouse, which were now the abodes of disease and death? He read a letter from Mr. Townsend, a clergyman, describing the state of the workhouse of Skibbereen, which was now obliged to be closed, not by the interference of Government, but by the board of guardians. It was most dreadfully overcrowded, there being 1,449 persons in a place only constructed to hold 800. Half the inmates were diseased, their clothing was wretched, and there was a total absence of fuel and fires. He urged upon the noble Lord not to insert a word which would force those suffering from disease into these wretched places.
§ SIR G. GREY
said, if the hon. Member had read the second clause of the Bill now before the House, he would have perceived that there was no necessity for apprehensions that persons labouring under infec- 219 tious diseases would be forced into the workhouses. With regard to the workhouse of Skibbereen, he would state that the strongest remonstrances had been forwarded to the guardians, who were now attending to their duties, and of course an improvement would take place in its condition.
MR. STAFFORD O'BRIEN
admitted that some such practices as that described by the noble Lord at the head of the Government were practised in some unions in Northamptonshire, although they had not gone so far as his Lordship's friend. He thought the word had better be retained, as this was a permanent Bill, and not introduced merely with reference to present circumstances.
MR. SMITH O'BRIEN
thought many of the observations made by hon. Members would have been more applicable, if the present Bill was not for the purpose of establishing a permanent poor law in Ireland. The next clause, if passed, would provide for every case of famine and disease. [An Hon. MEMBER: Yes, if the workhouses are full.] But they were now full, and 10,000 more were relieved than could be accommodated. They might assume that henceforward the workhouses would always be full. He thought, therefore, that the noble Lord ought to adhere to the clause as it stood.
§ SIR R. PEEL
believed that the omission of the word would very materially alter the character of this clause. The object of the clause was to make a material extension of the relief under the Poor Law, and to give a right to that relief out of the workhouse to all who were permanently disabled; namely, to all persons who from some mental or bodily defect were permanently disabled. If they omitted the word, the clause would allow relief to "all destitute poor persons who are disabled." As he understood the hon. Member (Mr. P. Scrope), he proposed to make a provision for all who were disabled without regard to the permanence of their debility. Then let them take this case, that an able-bodied man was disabled from earning his living bonâ fide because he could not procure employment. Upon the principle of this clause, as proposed to be altered, he would be entitled to relief. The noble Lord had referred to the case of a man who had had his leg cut off, as a person who was permanently disabled; but suppose his leg were only broken, whereby he was disabled only for a short period, such as six months, 220 from earning his living, that was not a permanent case, but it was one in which he thought the party ought to be entitled to some relief under this Bill; but he would rather provide for a special case of that kind than omit the word altogether. They ought to try such an experiment as this with great caution. In his opinion the consideration of the pecuniary relief of this country was much less important than the effect which such a measure as this would have upon those who had to earn their living by labour in Ireland. They must tell the Irish poor that they must rely on the exertions of their own industry for their means of support, rather than look to this country for the relief of their destitution. They would demoralise the people of Ireland if they taught them to depend upon parochial relief. To teach them to rely on parochial relief, would be, in effect to give them no relief whatever; and to familiarize them to that species of assistance would be not only a great injury to Ireland itself, but it would be felt also in England as a great calamity. It had very truly been said, that little dependence was to be placed on the permanent effect of voluntary subscriptions; and, upon the whole, he could not help coming to this conclusion, that a much more stringent measure than the present poor law would be necessary to meet the pressure of the existing emergency. He was perfectly ready to co-operate in trying any rational and promising experiment having that object in view, always bearing in mind that it should be an experiment, not so much intended to affect property, as to operate on the habits of the people. By the joint operation of the two clauses, relief would be given to all persons who were permanently affected; and he should certainly recommend the House not to omit the word "permanent." The principle of the Bill was, that the guardians should possess the power to give relief to the able-bodied poor out of the workhouse, when that building was full; and he thought that for the present such a measure was sufficiently extensive. He hoped, however, that in their desire to relieve property, they would not proceed too far, and that in any experiment which they might try they would advance with discretion and with caution.
§ LORD J. RUSSELL
was not prepared to relinquish the word "permanently." Hon. Gentlemen might say if it were not to be acted upon, as it was intended in the Act, it would be subject to fraud and 221 abuse; but he really feared this was not an answer, as there would be fraud and abuse also if the word were left out. The hon. Baronet the Member for Waterford had mentioned the case of the father of a family being disabled by sickness to such an extent as to be precluded from obtaining a livelihood for himself and family. He admitted that such a case might arise, and he thought that words might be inserted in the clause to meet that description of case. He was not prepared to leave out the word "permanently," but he was prepared to consider what words might be inserted to meet the views of hon. Members.
§ LORD G. BENTINCK
There is no man in this House more desirous than I am that every possible guard should be adopted to prevent abuses in the application of out-door relief in Ireland; but I must confess I should prefer to see the word "permanently" expunged. Under the provisions of the English Poor Law, powers are given to meet cases of this description. There are many cases of great hardship, as calamitous in their effects as those arising from accidents. There are cases in which a man may be attacked with a sudden illness, which may confine him to the house for one, two, three, and even a greater number of weeks; and I cannot see that such a serious illness is not be regarded in the light of as serious a calamity as a broken limb. I can see no difference in the probable consequences to a poor man between illness and a broken limb. In the 4th Clause of the English Poor Law, the overseers of the poor have a power to afford assistance to those who may be attacked with any sudden illness; and there is also in the 27th Clause of the same Act of Parliament, a power given to any two justices of the peace to order out-door relief in cases either of infirmity from old age, or incases of infirmity from bodily ailment. I think cases of infirmity of body and cases of sudden illness ought to be included in this Bill; and I think the same security which the English Poor Law provides for the sick man in England, ought to be extended to the present measure. The hon. Baronet the Member for Waterford has observed that it is a very different matter to apply this law to Ireland in the same manner as it might be applied to England, and has adverted to the great size of the poor-law unions in Ireland. I entirely agree with him that the poor-law unions 222 in Ireland are much too large. But as I do not think this is a fitting moment to enter into the merits of that question, I will not do so, but will content myself by expressing my opinion that, if the number of Irish workhouses were trebled, it would be a great improvement to the general poor relief system of the country. All I will now add is, that I shall vote to expunge the word.
§ MR. ESCOTT
said, he had a very strong impression that the word ought to be expunged. The question for them to consider was, whether the retention of the word might not exclude a great many persons from relief who would be starving without it. He was perfectly convinced that if such a restriction had existed in England for the last six months, they would have had many cases of starvation here.
§ MR. J. YOUNG
wished to know whether the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) had provided for cases in which poor persons might only require nourishment and not medicine? In Ireland there were many persons who suffered from fever, respecting whom the relieving officer had reported that everything medicine could do for them had been done, and that all they afterwards wanted was nutritious food adapted to the circumstances of their bodily condition. Had the noble Lord considered how he could meet the cases of those persons?
§ MR. P. SCROPE
wished also to know whether the noble Lord intended to include cases of sickness which were more numerous than accidents, and which would, for the major part, require out-door relief? The refusal of relief under such circumstances would be harsher in Ireland than in England. Take, for instance, the case of a small farmer occupying a few acres of land, or, perhaps only one acre: if, when attacked by illness, he were excluded from receiving out-door relief, what a position would he be in, when he applied to the guardians for relief! They would say, "No; we are not authorized to give you any. Parliament has not given us any provision to meet your case; your only course is to come into the workhouse." What would be the natural consequence? The poor man, unable to bear up against disease and want, would be compelled to seek an asylum in the workhouse with his entire family. His farm would be taken from him by the landlord—his furniture would be sold to pay the rent—he would have to quit his home, and the first thing the landlord, who was anxious to clear his 223 estate, would do, would be to pull down his cottage; and thus the unfortunate man on his return to health would be thrown out of his usual mode of livelihood by being compelled to resort to a peculiar form of relief. The ultimate consequences would be, that he and his family would have no resource left but to swell the burden of pauperism and mendicancy. If the provisions of the Bill extended to sick poor, he should not press the Amendment of which he had given notice.
§ SIR R. PEEL
was willing to give the hon. Member for Stroud (Mr. P. Scrope) credit for the best possible motives in the course he had adopted; but he had put a totally different construction upon the clause from that which the framers of the Bill intended. He conceived the guardians were not left any discretion as to giving relief to the permanently disabled. The only discretion which they had was, whether they should administer that relief in the House or out of it. If the workhouse was full, they were obliged to give out-door relief to the permanently disabled. The construction of the word "permanently" altered the entire character of the Bill.
§ SIR G. GREY
believed, that the construction put upon the word "permanently" by the right hon. Baronet the Member for Tamworth was the correct one. He quite admitted there were exceptionable cases, which ought in some way or other to be provided for. His noble Friend near him (Lord J. Russell) had stated he was prepared to consider what words could be introduced into the clause, which would give relief to persons disabled, not permanently but by accident. He thought it might be possible to have some permanent provision, and with that view his right hon. Friend the Chief Secretary for Ireland, and the hon. Gentleman the Solicitor for Ireland, were considering whether the Fever Act of last Session might not be continued; but it would be injudicious to decide now upon the class to be relieved, or the terms upon which such relief should be administered.
§ SIR H. W. BARRON
remarked, that the hon. Member for Stroud had forgotten, if indeed he ever knew, that there were in Ireland county hospitals, dispensaries, and other institutions of the kind. The hon. Gentleman had not once looked at them, and had argued as if there were no institutions for the reception of persons attacked with disease of a temporary nature. If the hon. Gentleman did not know the fact, he begged leave to inform him that no man 224 who might unfortunately meet with an accident, or be attacked with fever, could remain unrelieved by the present law. The hon. Gentleman had been arguing on the poetical assumption that the moment a man went into the workhouse, his dwelling was pulled down, his furniture seized, and his farm taken from him. He begged to say this was not the case. No such summary proceeding could take place, for the law in that respect was the same in Ireland and in Scotland as it was in England. The poetical imagination of the hon. Gentleman had led him to over-colour the picture considerably.
§ MR. WAKLEY
did not approve of the Irish hospital or dispensary dietary as at all likely to furnish that nutritious food which sick persons always required. He saw no reason why the poor of Ireland should not be treated as the poor of England. Why should a man be treated by law better in another country than in his own? If he were an Irishman he should blush. Yes, he should blush, and his cheeks would crimson, to feel that he was treated better by the law in another country than by the law of his own. How did they deal with the Irish pauper in England? If an able-bodied Irish pauper applied for relief in England, it was awarded to him fairly and generously, for it was admitted in principle that he had a right to it. But if after receiving relief here for a certain length of time, he was removed to his native country, he was not entitled to relief — the law would give him nothing, and he was left to starve. He had supposed the word "permanently" had crept into the clause by accident, for it was so monstrous and unjust that he could not believe it had been inserted designedly. But if it had got in by design, he should be glad to know who the designer was, though he had no desire to claim acquaintance with him. He supposed it must have been suggested by some old gentleman whose acquaintance they all repudiated. It was said the object was to give relief to the disabled destitute; but if they were not disabled as well as destitute, were they not to have relief? Was it the intention to give the destitute disabled man relief? If it were, why was the word "permanently" retained? This pottering and tinkering with the poor law question excited great disgust in the public mind. The English people wanted to know why there were to be three poor laws under the same Crown. They were giving 225 to the Irish poor at present a right to relief in another country, which they were not to have in their own, which, in his opinion, was a departure from the highest principles of justice and humanity, alike unworthy of and disgraceful to a British Legislature. They were bound, in justice to Ireland and Scotland, to give them a poor law, not less liberal in its operation than that which they gave to England. Deeming that the clause, if not amended as proposed, would arm the Irish guardians with power to inflict great injustice upon the Irish poor, he would give his most cordial and earnest support to the Amendment proposed by the hon. Gentleman the Member for Stroud.
§ LORD J. RUSSELL
said, that if they agreed to the proposal of the hon. Member for Finsbury, to introduce the English Poor Law into Ireland and Scotland, the hon. Gentleman would not be satisfied, inasmuch as they would introduce those abuses which he had so often deprecated as existing in the English Poor Law.
SIR W. JAMES
was not prepared to go the full length of the hon. Member for Finsbury (Mr. Wakley), but he hoped that the noble Lord at the head of the Government would say how far he intended the extensions to go. He hoped they would be extended as far as practicable.
§ MR. J. O'CONNELL
said, it was his intention to support the Amendment of the hon. Member for Stroud. If they were compelled to make this doubtful experiment, they ought to make it fully and fairly.
§ MR. GROGAN
was surprised to hear the hon. Member for Finsbury allude so pointedly to that which was a sore point, namely, the invidious distinctions which he alleged were made in the system of administering the English and Irish Poor Law.
§ LORD J. MANNERS
wished to hear the proposal of the hon. Baronet the Member for Waterford more in extenso. He had heard the hon. Baronet say something respecting the head of a family, and, if he understood him right, he supposed the relief was only to be afforded to the head of a family, if disabled. If the relief were to be extended to a son or a brother, for instance, there would not be so strong a case made out against expunging the clause.
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
was surprised that the hon. Member for Stroud should proceed with his 226 Amendment after what had fallen from his noble Friend. It would be exceedingly desirable to provide for the relief of those who might be disabled in a temporary manner; and as his noble Friend had declared his willingness to insert some words to meet that necessity, he hoped hon. Gentlemen would wait until the bringing up of the report, when they could see the words, and discuss their desirability. He hoped the Committee would adopt this course, rather than go a division.
§ MR. P. SCROPE
trusted, in whatever alteration the noble Lord intended to make, he would extend relief to the sick poor. He hoped the recommendation given in the report of the Poor Law Commissioners in 1841, namely, to afford out-door relief to the able-bodied poor of England, would be adopted, and that that principle would be applied to Ireland.
§ MAJOR LAYARD
said, he should vote against the Amendment if the House divided upon it. He hoped, however, that the hon. Member for Stroud would not press it to a division.
§ MR. WAKLEY
, in explanation, denied that he had, as was stated by the noble Lord (Russell) opposite, expressed any desire to have the old poor law, with all its abuses, introduced into Ireland. What he said was, that the old law should be fairly carried into execution. He did not think that the noble Lord ever found him an advocate of abuses of any kind.
§ Amendment withdrawn.
§ VISCOUNT COURTENAY
moved—That the following words be inserted after the word 'defect,' in line 16 of the first clause:—'And also of every such destitute poor person, being a widow, as shall have a legitimate child or legitimate children dependent upon her, and incapable of earning his, her, or their livelihood, and have no illegitimate child born after the commencement of her widowhood.'
§ CAPTAIN JONES
said, he was not averse to an effectual poor law for Ireland; but he feared that if the guardians were invested with a discretionary power to grant outdoor relief, many of the recipients would be in a much better situation than the ratepayers. He did not think the present circumstances of Ireland would justify the giving such powers to the guardians.
§ MR. P. SCROPE
thought the clause so ambiguously worded, that he wished to know distinctly from the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) whether the Bill gave a right to relief, in some shape or other, to all classes of destitute poor?
§ SIR G. GREY
said, there were two descriptions of poor provided for in the clause. There was an absolute right to relief given to the permanently disabled and destitute, in or out of the workhouse; but a discretionary power was given to the guardians to give them out-door relief in the event of there being no room for them in the workhouse.
§ Amendment withdrawn.
§ On the question that the Clause stand part of the Bill,
§ MR. SHAW
said, that as he had not objected to that clause, he was anxious shortly to draw the attention of the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) and the Committee to the important provisions it contained. It would be some answer—and, in reference to out-door relief, he would, when they came to the next clause, give a fuller one—to the invidious and unfounded cry got up against the representatives of the Irish proprietors in that House, and who waited upon the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) on the subject of that Bill, that they were adverse to an effectual poor law for Ireland—to the material and large additional burdens on their property, by that permanent poor law, supposing it were right to pass it at that time—or to any amount of charge that the Government might, upon their own responsibility, declare to be necessary, in order to meet the calamitous emergency which had arisen in Ireland. He would not delay the Committee then by discussing the question; but, still, he could not enter upon a consideration of the details of the measure in Committee, without once more renewing the protest he had so frequently and ineffectually made before, that, while he, and those with whom he acted, threw no impediment in the way of any temporary measure, and shrunk from no responsibility or charge which might be involved in any measures the Government pleased to adopt for the extraordinary exigency — that a period when an unprecedented famine raged in Ireland, and general excitement prevailed in that House, and that country, in consequence of the large pecuniary advances they had to make on that account, was not the one for a calm and deliberate consideration of a permanent poor law adapted to the ordinary wants and condition of Ireland. As, however, he was overruled on that point, he would endeavour not to obstruct the Bill, but to amend it, and to consider the clauses seriatim as dispassionately as it was possible; and his object then, with regard to 228 the 1st Clause, was, to mark the importance of two provisions it contained, which were most material additions to the existing Irish Poor Law, namely, first, the right to relief in the workhouse to all the destitute poor; and, secondly, the right to relief, either in or out of the workhouse, to all the permanently disabled by reason of old age, infirmity, or bodily or mental defect; and that it should be in justice observed, that those two considerable additions to the present law in Ireland were allowed to be enacted without objection.
§ MR. WAKLEY
did not discover that the guardians were subject to any penalty in case of neglecting their duty; nor did he find any provision in the Bill to enable destitute persons to enforce their right to relief.
§ SIR G. GREY
was understood to say, that if the guardians neglected their duty, their places would be filled up by paid officers.
§ Clause agreed to.
§ On Clause 2 being proposed,
§ MR. SHAW
thought it would be candid of him to state, before any Amendment was proposed to that 2nd Clause, the course he meant to take respecting it. He felt that no Amendment of which the clause was susceptible, could render the provision of out-door relief to the able-bodied labourer suitable or safe in the present condition of Ireland. He, therefore, intended, whether the clause was amended or not, to divide the House against it when the question was put, that that clause stand part of the Bill; but as he was well aware that he should be beaten on that division, and as the proper time for amending the clause was before that division could be taken, he should, of course, support such Amendments as he thought would in any degree mitigate, although, in his opinion, no Amendment could altogether avoid, the evil of the clause.
MR. STAFFORD O'BRIEN
proposed an Amendment by which, when out-door relief should become necessary for the able-bodied in a union, instead of the Commissioners having an irresponsible power of ordering the guardians to give such relief, the proposition should come in the first instance from the guardians themselves. The Commissioners might otherwise be influenced by underhand and unofficial representations, the guardians find themselves compelled to give out-door relief in cases in which it was not necessary, and a most 229 dangerous and unconstitutional precedent be thus established.
§ SIR G. GREY
objected very much to the principle which the hon. Gentleman wished to introduce, for it would shut out the Poor Law Commissioners from any means of information, except such as the board of guardians might choose to give; and after the experience they had had of the conduct of boards of guardians, he thought that would be rather a dangerous course to pursue. Suppose that the assistant commissioner was on the spot, and knew that the workhouse was full, or that an infectious disease was raging within, and communicated the fact to the Commissioners, they would be unable to exercise the discretion given them by that clause, if they agreed to the Amendment of the hon. Gentleman, because the board of guardians had abstained from communicating the information.
§ MR. GROGAN
supported the Amendment. Every one know that it had frequently happened under the Labour-rate Act, that the first which the magistrates and ratepayers heard of the Act being called into operation, was the proclamation in the Gazette issued upon information given privately to the Government. The same abuse might exist, if the application was not to come from the guardians.
§ MR. LABOUCHERE
was sure the system could not work in Ireland, unless there was a cordial co-operation between the Commissioners and the guardians. There had been some cases in Ireland of which the House had heard, in which the guardians had not co-operated with the Poor Law Commissioners; and if the Amendments were adopted, guardians would only have to omit making an application to the Commissioners, and it would be impossible for the Commissioners, however great might be the exigency—suppose fever in a workhouse—to order out-door relief.
§ MR. SIDNEY HERBERT
opposed the Amendments as calculated to remove the responsibility which in such case ought to rest upon the Commissioners.
§ MR. GEORGE A. HAMILTON
was very sorry the Government would not agree to the Amendments proposed by his hon. Friend. He fully concurred with the right hon. Gentleman opposite, that a cordial co-operation between the Poor Law Commissioners and the boards of guardians was necessary, in order to carry out the system effectively in Ireland; but instead of promoting that co-operation, he feared 230 the rejection of the Amendments would prevent it. Surely the guardians, to whom the administration of the system was committed, ought to be considered the proper judges when out-door relief was necessary. He could not admit that boards of guardians would not make application to the Commissioners when out-door relief to the able-bodied might become necessary. He believed there was no indisposition on the part of guardians generally in Ireland to administer relief liberally to the poor. He had a good deal of experience himself, and he could say he had scarcely ever known an instance in which there was a disposition to refuse relief to those who were entitled to it. On the contrary, he would say, the fault was rather the other way—the inclination was, rather to admit those who were not destitute, than to refuse admission to those who were. There might be some exceptions, but he thought the legislation most objectionable which was founded upon the supposition that men would not do their duty, and which was justified by the exception rather than the rule.
§ The CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER
said, there was no occasion for such an inquiry as that supposed by the hon. Gentleman who had spoken last. There was only one inquiry or matter of fact to be ascertained—namely, whether the workhouse was full, or whether fever prevailed in it. There could be no need for the board of guardians to ascertain that; it was a fact for the Commissioners to ascertain.
§ Amendment withdrawn.
§ MR. P. SCROPE
moved that words be inserted in the clause which would empower the boards of guardians to afford out-door relief to the able-bodied poor, even before the workhouses were full; that, in short, the Poor Law of Ireland should be assimilated, in that respect, to that which prevailed in England. He felt confident that a great portion of the mendicancy, vagrancy, and agrarian outrages in Ireland, were attributable to the present restricted character of the Irish Poor Law, which did not permit the boards of guardians or the Commissioners to afford out-door relief under any circumstances to the industrious and honest labourer whilst the poorhouse could accommodate him. The majority of the well-disposed portion of the able-bodied and unemployed labourers of Ireland refused to accept relief which compelled them to shut themselves within the walls of a 231 workhouse, or he might truly call it by the name of a prison. Meetings had been recently held in Ireland on this subject, at which resolutions were adopted, in which those who attended them declared that the rights of property were secondary to the rights of existence—property being sacred only so long as it afforded the means of sustaining and preserving human life; and they called upon the Legislature so to frame the new enactment for the relief of the poor of Ireland, that every individual should have a right of maintenance out of the soil in which God had given him birth, unless he forfeited that right by sloth or misconduct. He (Mr. Scrope) did not think that any one could controvert such resolutions. They went on further in those resolutions to state that it was but just that labour should be provided for the able-bodied and destitute labourer; that any enactment which did not provide such relief would be but nugatory; and that the property of the country would still be subjected to the depredations of the poor. They asked the Legislature, then, to abolish the present penal mode of relief which was offered in Ireland to the industrious, but destitute, able-bodied labourer, who would prefer travelling about the country as a mendicant, to being obliged to be shut up within the walls of a prison. He contended that the relief which would be afforded to such parties under the Bill as it at present stood, would be an unfair, unfit, unjust, and improper mode of relieving the necessities of the industriously disposed poor of Ireland. He urged his Amendment on the ground of economy also, which it would introduce in providing for the wants of the poor of Ireland; it was quite clear that if the boards of guardians were permitted to afford employment in the workhouse to the able-bodied poor, they would earn a very large proportion of the cost of their maintenance. Such power as be sought by this Amendment to be extended to the board of guardians in Ireland, had been given for years to the guardians of the poor of England; and he begged to refer the House to the report which had been presented to them in 1841 by the Poor Law Commissioners, as to the very beneficial effects of such a system of relieving the able-bodied poor of this country. He would direct the attention of the House to what had been done in that respect by the guardians of the Chorlton union, which was in the borough of Manchester. The guardians of that union had employed their 232 able-bodied poor in the reclamation of a bog which they had now converted into a very fertile farm, which yielded almost sufficient for the support of those who were employed on it. And as that scheme had been successful—and it was not the only successful instance in England of a similar kind—why should not the boards of guardians in Ireland be allowed to employ their able-bodied poor in the reclamation of bogs and other public works which would prove eminently useful to Ireland? But then it was said the workhouse was the best test, and that without that test they could not be safe from the tremendous influx of paupers which flowed in for relief from the guardians. Now, in answer to such arguments, he would maintain that the labour test was as good a test as the workhouse; and, indeed, a better test for the industrious and able-bodied poor. The idle man would prefer the workhouse to the labour test. He would be allowed to live in sloth in the workhouse, and that was all he wanted. If they applied to an able-bodied applicant for relief the labour test, they would see whether he was industrious or not. He had strong authority to support him in saying that the labour test would be better than that of the workhouse. He had letters from Ireland, including one from a Mr. O'Malley, and another from Mr. Shafto Adair, in which the writers strongly recommended the proposition which he had submitted to the House. They unanimously concurred in saying that it would be the most absurd tiling in the world to refuse out-door relief in the shape of employment to the able-bodied poor. Ireland stood greatly in need of drainage, reclamation of waste lands, and the general cultivation of her soil; and in such ways the able-bodied poor could be most profitably employed under the superintendence of the boards of guardians. Mr. Shafto Adair was of opinion that unless the able-bodied poor were so employed, the mendicancy and agrarian crimes of Ireland would increase instead of diminish; and he (Mr. Scrope) concurred in the opinion of that gentleman on that point. In England, there were annually employed by the boards of guardians 80,000 able-bodied poor. Now, that number was very much larger than the whole of the poor of all classes that were annually relieved in Ireland. And yet in England, as they knew, it was much easier for a man to obtain employment—indeed there appeared to be work for every man who was willing to do it. He conceived 233 that the proposition which he had brought forward would effect more good for Ireland than the whole provisions of the present Bill. He thought that not only were the industrious poor of Ireland entitled to such a provision as he suggested, but that the ratepayers, whose interests would be advanced by it, were also entitled to ask the Legislature to adopt it. He believed, that unless some such provision were granted, the demoralisation, vagrancy, and agrarian outrages of Ireland would increase. He did not believe that the Irish labourer was idle. He believed that the Irish labourer, if he had opportunities afforded him, would be as industrious in Ireland as he was in London, Glasgow, Liverpool, or New York; and that it was a calumny to say, that if opportunity was afforded to them, they would not exert themselves, and obtain a livelihood by honest industry. All that he asked for was, that they should be permitted that opportunity; that a penal mode of relief should not be applied to them.
§ MR. LABOUCHERE
admitted, that the question which the hon. Member for Stroud had brought under the consideration of the House was of extreme importance; but he must at the same time confess that he could not vote for his proposition. He thought, that nobody who had attentively watched the operations of the late Labour-rate Act in Ireland would be prepared to say with the hon. Member that it would be wise to apply the labour test as a means of meeting the destitution of that country. While the House admitted the principle upon which this clause rested, viz., that no able-bodied man in Ireland should be allowed to starve, but should have the means of relief, he trusted that they would at the same time take care not to sanction a provision which would give encouragement to improvidence. The Committee would recollect, that as the Bill stood at present, relief would be afforded to the able-bodied labourer out of the workhouse when the workhouse was full. But he confessed that he entertained no very high opinion as to the excellence of the system of out-door relief in Ireland. He was of opinion, that if the proposition of the hon. Member were adopted, the greater portion of the able-bodied labourers of Ireland would seek for relief under it. They had instances of that kind under the operation of the Act which sanctioned the employment of the poor on public works. Such a mode of employing the poor of Ireland had, he believed, a most demoralising effect on that class. He did 234 not think that they would be consulting the interests of Ireland if they sanctioned a system such as that proposed, which would have the effect of withdrawing the industrious classes of Ireland from their ordinary occupations, and making them dependants upon the public bounty. It would destroy that self-supporting and independent spirit, by means of which to a great extent it was to be hoped that Ireland would be raised from her present enfeebled condition. This Bill was intended to be a permanent and not merely a temporary measure, whilst the proposal of the hon. Gentleman was suited only to some great emergency as that under which Ireland was at present labouring; and as he believed that such a measure, if introduced permanently into Ireland, would retard its progress towards that prosperity which it must be the sincere desire of all to see her attain, he felt bound to resist the Motion of his hon. Friend.
MR. SMITH O'BRIEN
did not think that the right hon. Gentleman had shown sufficient reasons why the Committee should reject the proposal of the hon. Member for Stroud. He regretted that his hon. Friend had not raised the question in a manner in which it might be properly discussed, otherwise he should feel pleasure in voting for the proposal.
MR. DILLON BROWNE
said, labourers in Ireland were unwilling to go into the workhouse, but they would willingly take work out of the workhouse; and, if that was allowed under the Bill, it would then be the interest of the landlords to provide labour on their own estates.
§ MR. FERRAND
wished to ask the right hon. Gentleman the Secretary for Ireland how he expected to carry out the workhouse test at the present time, when there was hardly a workhouse in Ireland that was free from fever of a most fearful kind? In the Cork workhouse 225 had died in one week.
§ MR. LABOUCHERE
said, the hon. Gentleman had not only not read the Bill, but was in ignorance of the clause they were discussing, for it provided that where fever existed in the workhouses, out-door relief should be administered.
MR. M. J. O'CONNELL
thought a great deal of unjust and indiscriminate censure had been cast upon the system 235 of public works now in operation in Ireland. Those works had been exceedingly beneficial in many instances, and good roads had been made through hilly districts where none previously existed. He thought it was better to cease fighting those by-battles, and come at once to a discussion on the main principle of the Bill, if they were to have one.
§ MR. P. SCROPE
withdrew his Amendment, seeing that the feeling of the House was against him. He was, however, still of the same opinion, and did not feel that he could say, liberavi animam meam.
§ On the question that the Clause stand part of the Bill,
§ MR. SHAW
said, that was the proper opportunity, after the Committee had provided the right of in-door relief to all the destitute poor, and out-door relief to all the permanently disabled among the destitute poor in Ireland, that he should raise the objection, and take the opinion of the Committee, against the principle of providing out-door relief for the able-bodied labourer—a principle which, he was persuaded, would be destructive to the property of Ireland, and demoralising to the character of the labouring population. In answer to the speech of the hon. Member for Stroud (Mr. Poulett Scrope), he would say that his objection applied equally to a labour rate as to gratuitous relief; for he knew no means by which pauper labour could be employed without displacing independent labour. The system could add nothing to the capital applicable to the employment of labour; but it deranged the due relation of supply and demand—giving the sum to paupers, through the means of poor rates and boards of guardians, which would otherwise flow to the independent labourer in the more natural and wholesome channel between the employer and the employed. He had already experienced the indulgence of the House when, at considerable length, he had contended that all principle, all authority, the experience of three centuries in England, and, above all, the pregnant experience of the last twelve months in Ireland, were absolutely condemnatory of the principle of outdoor relief to the able-bodied labourer. He would not again trespass on the House by going over the same ground. He would avoid all the extracts and the detailed statistics to which he had before referred, and only try shortly to answer the question which the noble Lord had commenced the debate by asking, and which nearly every 236 Member who followed the noble Lord had repeated—"If you will not take my remedy, what do you propose yourself?" He thought the noble Lord was not quite correct in saying that no attempt had been made to answer that question. He felt all the difficulty of the present crisis in Ireland, and that he would be a bold man indeed who would confidently affirm that he had found its solution; but some remedy had been proposed by those who, with him (Mr. Shaw), waited upon the noble Lord; and even though that should not turn out to be perfectly effectual, he thought that they had at least shown that the remedy proposed by the noble Lord would, at all events, be not only ineffectual, but fraught with the most disastrous consequences; and it would be but very unsatisfactory reasoning of a physician, treating a case of great difficulty and danger, to say to those in consultation with him, "Now, if you will not at once prescribe a medicine which you will undertake shall cure the patient, then you cannot fairly object to my administering a dose of poison to him." In speaking of the deputation on behalf of the Irish proprietors to the noble Lord, there was one point on which the noble Lord, he (Mr. Shaw) found, had been misunderstood, and he might be permitted to explain. The noble Lord stated that one member of the deputation had alluded to private charity as a sufficient resource in Ireland, and it was supposed that he (Mr. Shaw) had made that observation; whereas the noble Lord had also referred to an answer which was made by another member of the deputation, which was made by him (Mr. Shaw), that it must be admitted that, as regarded the charity of the poor to the poor, which had so abounded in Ireland, the means of that must necessarily fail with the loss of the potato; but the fact was, that was not prominently relied upon by any member of the deputation. What they proposed, and what he still proposed, was, as the best remedy of all for the emergency, to pass a temporary Act, vesting in the Lord Lieutenant, or any authority the Government preferred, ample powers—say for five, or any given number of years—to raise means in Ireland, as far as the whole property of the country would go, to prevent the people from starving, till this calamity was past, and the transition period over, from small holders of land to labourers, which the loss of the potato must inevitably induce; and if they would not do that which would be best, but were coerced by cla- 237 mour to enact at such a moment this permanent poor law for Ireland, then for the present be content with the important additional provisions it contained, of the right to in-door relief for all, and out-door relief for the permanently disabled, which latter provision would probably establish a poor-law pensioner in almost every cabin in Ireland, having also a power to increase indefinitely the workhouse accommodation. A member of the deputation, his hon. Friend and Colleague (Mr. Hamilton) assured the noble Lord, on behalf of those whom they represented, that there was a general recognition of the principle, that, as a permanent system, the property of Ireland should be chargeable for the support of the poor of Ireland; and to a declaration of that principle in the present Bill, he (Mr. Shaw) would not object. But what he objected to was, telling the people of Ireland, and, above all other times, telling them at the present, when more than 3,000,000 were subsisting on public charity—when a gigantic system of out-door relief was actually in operation—necessary, it might be, in a case of famine, to prevent deaths by starvation—telling them that when that relief under the Temporary Relief Act of that Session ended, that they were all to be by law entitled to out-door relief under the permanent poor law, was not only to destroy every motive to independence and self-reliance which the right hon. Baronet (Sir R. Peel) had that night stated were so important to implant and cherish in the Irish labourer; but it was also to delude them with a hope that by no human means could be realized. For, need he say, that if that number relied for out-door relief under the poor law, as he verily believed they would, as surely after the cessation of the temporary relief—if the present Bill became law—as they were then doing after relief under the Labour-rate Act had ceased, and which the Government admitted by their provision of eight millions of money to sustain them when that was superseded, must it not be evident to reason and common sense, that the whole poor law and property of Ireland must perish under such a deluge of pauperism? It was not only the western counties, where, as he and his Colleague (Mr. Hamilton) had shown, there would not be much more than 1l. a head for those now supported by the public, if the law sacrificed the whole rateable property of the district to them—in Mayo, that was 326,000l. with 300,000 paupers, and in the six coun- 238 ties of Clare, Galway, Mayo, Roscommon, Sligo, and Leitrim, 1,700,000l. for about 1,300,000 paupers; but if they imposed a national rate in Ireland, which, as regarded the north and east, would be as unjust as imposing it upon England—then what would be the proportion? The noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) the other night referred to a return moved for by the hon. Member for Lancashire, showing the annual value of property rated, and the rate per head of the expenditure on the total number of paupers relieved comparatively in England and Ireland; and the noble Lord spoke rather reproachfully of the charge in Ireland being only about 6d. in the pound, while in England it was 1s. 7d.; but let the noble Lord recollect they were but beginning in Ireland—that when that calculation was made, there were but about 47,000 persons in the workhouses, while at the present time there were upwards of 110,000, which would increase the charge to about 1s. The present Bill, giving the right to relief, and providing for all the permanently disabled, would at least double that, making 2s. in the pound, and then superadd out-door relief, which in England amounted to five-sixths of the whole sum expended under the poor laws; and that would bring the rate to about 10s. in the pound. Recollect then, that there were four labourers to be supported in Ireland for one in England, and you would have poor law and property crushed under your unwise and inconsiderate legislation. Bear in mind, moreover, that while the average wages of labour in England was 8s. a week, that the average was only 2s. in Ireland, and then tell him what possible standard could be devised, amongst an agricultural population living upon that low rate of wages, by which they could place a pauper receiving out-door relief, in a worse condition than that of an independent labourer; it was, therefore, rather from the circumstances and condition of the Irish labourer, than from any fault inherent in his character, that he would infer the impossibility of their resisting the demoralising effect of out-door relief. There was not a single argument the noble Lord used then in favour of out-door relief, which would not have been equally applicable to the Irish Poor Law in 1838, when the noble Lord and his Colleagues so strictly prohibited it from forming any part of their project; and the fact was, the real motive which urged them forward was the famine in Ireland, and the consequent 239 clamour which had been raised against Ireland in England, without any due consideration of the real wants and permanent interests of that ill-fated portion of the United Kingdom. He was quite aware of the unpopularity in that House of the course that he was taking, and the small number that he could expect to divide with him. Nevertheless, if he went into the lobby alone, a paramount sense of duty would oblige him to divide the House against that clause of the Bill.
MR. DILLON BROWNE
thought the speech of the right hon. Gentleman the Recorder for Dublin was most illogical. The right hon. Gentleman's argument was, that because so many people were now employed throughout Ireland under the temporary relief fund, they must therefore be permanently employed; but this was no necessary consequence, and the provision for the present emergency was distinct from the ordinary system of relief. The House was now legislating for the future. The opinion prevailed in Ireland that outdoor relief was the only mode in which relief would be agreeable to the people of that country. If the House did not adopt the proposition for giving out-door relief, they might as well pass no Bill at all.
§ MR. YOUNG
was not insensible of the disadvantage at which he was placed in attempting, at a period of great prevailing distress in Ireland, and excited sympathies in the House, to state objections to the Bill as proposed by the Government. He felt this disadvantage, and also he could not say that he entertained, to the full extent, the apprehensions which had been expressed by others. Still the clause under consideration was open to grave objection; it appeared little applicable to the state of matters in Ireland; and was certainly at variance with the principles which, for years past, had guided the course of English legislation. He was not prepared to dispute the proposition that Irish property should be taxed, and amply taxed, for the adequate relief of Irish destitution. Years ago, when such support was perilous and unpopular, he had given his vote and all the support in his power to the Irish Poor Law; and though that measure, for various causes, had not answered all the expectations of its more sanguine advocates, still, on the whole, it had worked well: it had proved a great stay and resource in times of need, and afforded relief to large numbers; while collateral facilities and advantages had arisen, and he hoped 240 would continue to arise from it, which, but for this enactment, could have had no existence. He always felt a satisfaction in having voted for it; and he was now prepared to vote for a considerable extension of its provisions, provided such extension was made on definite and intelligible grounds—on grounds similar to those on which the English Poor Law Amendment Act was based. With these views, he had given a ready assent to the first clause of the present Bill, extending out-door relief to those permanently disabled by age and infirmity, and the right, to relief within the walls of the workhouse to all. This was a great advance; and, looking to the vast numbers of very poor persons in Ireland, the pressure there would be to obtain outdoor relief on easy terms, and the laxity which almost always and ever, with the most vigilant and active central superintendence, was certain to creep into the administration of a poor law, he felt assured, the numbers who would seek and obtain out-door relief under this clause would be very great. Many, whom no persuasion could induce to enter a poorhouse, and who subsisted scantily upon their own exertions, or by dependence upon neighbours or relations, would share in this out-door relief. On a moderate calculation, the additional burden would at the least double the rates all over Ireland. Still he was not prepared to object to the proposed extension; perhaps it was unavoidable under the circumstances, and it would no doubt operate as a most material lightening to that immense class in Ireland, who were themselves just raised above the level of pauperism. He could not approach the second clause with the same feeling, or indeed without great misgiving. The clause, as it read in the Bill, seemed only to contemplate out-door relief to the able-bodied in the case of some appalling-catastrophe, such as that which now overshadowed and desolated Ireland; or in that of pestilential disease, which would render the workhouse unfit for human habitation. Now, surely, in the ordinary course of affairs, and relying on Divine goodness, it might be hoped that such direful visitations would recur but rarely, and only at long intervals; and each emergency might safely be left to be dealt with as it arose. Some forethought and precaution on the part of the Executive could make as efficient safeguards against them as anything in the present Bill would prove. It was unnecessary to make provision in a permanent 241 Act of Parliament against rare and special occurrences; they should be dealt with by special and extraordinary exertion, as the occasion arose; and the placing such permanent provision on record in an Act of Parliament only tended to mislead and alarm, to raise unfounded expectations, and equally unfounded fears. But he was inclined to think the noble Lord took another view of the clause in the speech which he had delivered a few days ago—his whole argument had been directed to the expediency and advantage of out-door relief in Ireland. It might be inferred from the noble Lord's speech, that recourse would be frequently had to those provisions, and that out-door relief would become habitual, and in constant operation in some one or other part of Ireland. If this were really the view to be taken, nothing could be more alarming, nothing less suited to the condition of Ireland. It was the very system which had been tried and found wanting in England; and the limitation of the relief to food alone increased the danger. In times of distress, food alone was to be afforded to parties who could not pay for a habitation, who might be without clothing, and in an inclement season destitute of fuel. What test could you apply to such relief? How could you make men give all their day, even though it were spent idly and listlessly as on the public works, when you give them in return nothing but food, while they may stand in the meantime in the utmost need of other things equally necessary to the support of life? No test would exist, no safeguard could be applied. It was the old allowance system of England over again—relief in aid of wages. All the arguments of all the soundest authorities who had written or spoken on such subjects were opposed to this system. The gist of what the Poor Law Commissioners themselves had recommended in 1839, in their report of the further amendment of the Poor Law, condemned it. Those gentlemen, after stating the fundamental principle with respect to the legal relief of the poor to be, "that the condition of the pauper ought to be, on the whole, less eligible than that of the independent labourer," proceeded to say—The truth of this position has either been generally admitted, or at least has not been disputed; but the difficulty has consisted in applying it to practice. All distribution of relief in money or goods, to be spent or consumed by the pauper in his own house, is inconsistent with the principle in question. The administrators of public relief have in general no means of finding pro- 242 fitable employment for labourers in agriculture or other occupation in the open air. It is impossible to apply the principle to those who receive outdoor or domiciliary relief; for their condition cannot be always ascertained or regulated, inasmuch as it is often impossible to discover what resources they have, or what aid they may receive in addition to the maintenance afforded to them from the poor rates. In order to carry the above-mentioned principle into effect, it is necessary that the pauper should be relieved, not by giving him money or goods to be spent or consumed at his own house, but by receiving him into a public establishment.So say the Poor Law Commissioners. No efficient rules can be framed to check or control out-door relief. But what says the noble Lord? Here are his words:—There is nothing in the Bill which makes it at all necessary that this out-door relief, given to the able-bodied poor, would be gratuitous relief. I should hold that the boards of guardians and Poor Law Commissioners in Ireland will have the same power of making regulations for the employment of such persons out of the workhouse, in the same way as the Poor Law Commissioners and boards of guardians have that power in England.That is to say, according to the noble Lord, in Ireland you may make rules similar to those made in England. No doubt we may—rules equally inoperative, unsuccessful, and demoralising. We can fail, and must fail, as every similar attempt in England had failed. He would add a short extract from Mr. Revans' pamphlet; that gentleman had acted as secretary to Commissioners of poor inquiry both in England and Ireland, and was well acquainted with the working and abuses of the old English Poor Law, and with the condition and requirements of Ireland. After showing, by a long array of instances and argument, how hopeless was the attempt to employ pauper labour profitably or usefully, and how certain such an attempt was to spread wider the circle of pauperism, and increase the evils it sought to cure, he adverted to the evil tendencies resulting from employment of a nature meant to disgust paupers, and deter them from seeking relief from the public rates—such as the gravel pit, wheeling barrows of sand from one point to another, and so forth. Mr. Revans remarked—The moral effect of these employments was of the worst description; those who were employed could not perceive that the toil they were made to endure served any good, and, consequently, it became vexatious, and malice was attributed as the motive of those who enforced it. The result of such employment has usually been the complete demoralisation of those who were employed, and the generation of bad feelings towards the working classes in those who had to superintend them, and also in those who witnessed their conduct.243 These were the results in England of the system which the noble Lord now recommends for adoption in Ireland. The germ, at least, of all the evils from which England had suffered, was contained in the Government proposal; that system, tried under the most favourable circumstances, in the richest and most energetic country in the world, had gone well nigh to swamp its landed property, and to convert its freeborn labourers—as Lord Spencer declared—into pauperized slaves. Much, he feared, there were too sufficient grounds for the alarm expressed. It would not be easy to depict to the House the extent of the alarm which this proposal had raised amongst the landowners and tenants by lease in Ireland. He had but a few days since returned from the county which he had the honour to represent—it was amongst the most unhappily circumstanced in Ireland—densely peopled—there had been a necessity to employ for some time past on public works more than 25,000 persons—residents of property were few and far between—the district was hilly—the soil of inferior description—the towns small and few, and there existed no manufactures; yet, in that county, the poor rates far exceeded the average stated by the noble Lord, and dwelt upon by several other Members with something like supercilious triumph. In the three unions, which nearly covered the county, the rates, instead of being only 5¾ d. in the pound, amounted in the Cavan union to 7½d.—in the Cootehill union, to 9½d. in the Bailieborough union to 10½d. for the last four years and upwards. If to this amount were added the probable or rather inevitable increase under the first clause of the present Bill, they would have an amount of rate exceeding the average of England; and this, let it be recollected, on a valuation which approached much nearer to the real value of property rated, than did any public valuation in England. Then look to the population—the noble Lord had quoted a passage often referred to in the House from the report of the Commissioners of Poor Inquiry. It gave the number of agricultural labourers in England and Ireland respectively, and the number of cultivated acres; it appeared there was one agricultural labourer to every thirty-three cultivated acres in England; but where a superior description of farming was pursued, more labour was used. In the highest farmed district, where the most improved machines were employed, and every resource of skill and 244 ingenuity called into action, one labourer, he believed, was required for every twenty acres; but in Cavan, in the whole county, the agricultural labourers stood in the proportion of one to every nine statute acres, and in some baronies of one to every seven; that is to say, in the whole county there were more than twice, and in some parts of it more than three times the number of agricultural labourers than could be permanently employed with profit in the highest description of farming. But the noble Lord had referred to Sir R. Kane's opinion, and instanced the county of Armagh as a district where a high degree of comfort was consistent with very small farms and a dense population. Had the noble Lord been better acquainted with the locality, he would scarcely have instanced it in point as a purely agricultural district. Undoubtedly the inhabitants of Armagh were remarkable for their intelligence and their industry, which was much above the average of Ireland; but the county was fortunately circumstanced in many respects. The valleys equalled in fertility the most fertile parts of Ireland—the hill sides were covered with orchards—fruit trees which did not flourish elsewhere, there attained luxuriance; but above all, there was in the county an immense water power, which had been most skilfully economised, and most industriously employed—so that two-thirds of the population owed their prosperity rather to the presence of manufactures than to agriculture. He was the last person in the House disposed to question the conclusions arrived at in Sir R. Kane's admirable book; he thought them founded soundly and wisely; and the chief hope for Ireland lay in their being diligently studied, and effectively worked out. He looked forward with hope. Ireland had great and yet untouched resources; he had confidence in the energy and good will of the resident gentry; and relied on the intelligence, the honest purpose, and the willingness of the peasantry to labour under due encouragement. Still, many points must be attained—many difficulties surmounted—before the Irish peasant could acquire the skill and the habits which had placed the peasantry of other lands in comfort—in affluence, when compared with the rags and misery of Ireland. Before the small holding of the Irish peasant should be cultivated with the judicious rotation of crops, the economy of manure, and the watchful perseverance which enriched a Belgian farm—before there should have been invested in the soil 245 of Ireland an amount of capital equal to that which the untiring industry of centuries has invested in the hill cultivation of Tuscany—years upon years, perhaps generations, must pass away; and it seemed an evil augury for the future, and the noble Lord was doing but little to forward them to the end in view, when he invited Ireland to adopt a system, which, if all the arguments on which the Poor Law Amendment Act was based were not valueless and void—if the accumulated experience of England was not to be set aside as a thing of nought—must, while it threatens the property of the country, inevitably weaken the self-reliance and independent exertion of the labourer.
§ LORD J. RUSSELL
The right hon. Gentleman (Mr. Shaw) who moved the omission of the clause, has taken for granted that the present position of Ireland is to be the regular state of that country; and, arguing upon this supposition, he has asked how this clause and this Bill can prevent the continuance of the existing distress? Why, I admit at once, what I have frequently admitted in the course of this Session, that I do not think that either a permanent poor law, or any other permanent law, would provide for a state of things so calamitous as that which at present exists. When, however, the right hon. Gentleman asserts that there are 300,000 persons now receiving relief from the public works in the county of Mayo, and when he declares that it would be impossible for the property of that county to support so many by out-door relief, I must say, that I cannot accept that as a correct description of the usual state of Ireland; and I cannot admit that this Bill, and the particular clause which we are now considering, are to be tried by that test. And, indeed, if we were to try it by that test, how completely would the substitute which the right hon. Gentleman has mentioned fail, and fail to a greater degree than the clause before the House! The right hon. Gentleman has stated that I did not correctly represent the views of the deputation which I saw upon this subject. I am sorry I did not correctly represent them; I did not represent them as fully as I might have done, but I certainly did wish to convey clearly what seemed to me to be of importance in the observations made by the gentlemen who composed that deputation. The right hon. Gentleman says that one of their declarations in substance was, that they were fully prepared to grant that 246 the property of Ireland should be burdened to any extent for the purpose of in-door relief. Now, let us apply this admission to the state of out-door relief which exists at the present moment, as the right hon. Gentleman takes the present condition of the country as the usual state in which it is found. Let us try his willingness to grant any amount of in-door relief with the present state of things. Let us try it with his own statement, that there are 700,000 heads of families, as we must suppose them to be, who are at the present moment receiving out-door relief in the county of Mayo. Well, these 700,000 heads of families must be viewed as representing 3,000,000 of individuals; and how, I will ask, could workhouses be found sufficiently large and numerous enough to hold that multitude of persons? And yet if we take the right hon. Gentleman's argument, and apply it to the Bill and to the question before the House, we must take his willingness to grant any amount of in-door relief as a substitute for the measure proposed in the Bill. I do not remember that anything of very great importance was proposed by the deputation as a substitute for the proposal in the Bill, with the exception of the system of in-door relief—a system, be it remembered, which is provided for in the existing Act; for it is there enacted, that when more workhouse room is needed, that it shall be in the power of the guardians to raise money to build new workhouses or add to the old. The existing Act, however, does not provide for a state of things resembling, in any degree, the present calamitous condition of Ireland. The hon. Gentleman who last sat down proceeded on the fallacy that we are wishing to establish what we have hitherto opposed—that we are anxious to establish that out-door relief should be the permanent mode of relief, and that in-door relief should be the exception, in Ireland. I think the hon. Gentleman in that respect has misunderstood the Bill now before the House, and the observations I made before the Speaker left the chair. I never argued that it was desirable that out-door relief and out-door labour should be given as a general rule in the unions of Ireland. I am not of opinion that that mode of relief is a desirable system. I quite admit that no labour given in English parishes has proved, or can prove, a sufficient test of destitution; and I entirely subscribe to the statement contained in the report of the Poor Law Commissioners of England, 247 when they say that this system of labour had generally failed as a system, and that the best way is to give relief in some public institution. Under the present Bill, when the workhouses are full, or when fever prevails in them to an extent which would render it unadvisable to increase the number of the inmates, and numbers of able-bodied persons apply for relief, what is the course to be pursued? The guardians may, if they think fit, add to the workhouse accommodation; and this extension of accommodation is not only provided for in the existing law, but, on the contrary, it is implied; but no one could have conceived or supposed that anything like the present state of calamity would require to be provided for, and that a period of distress of more than usual severity should occur, when numerous applications should be made for relief by able-bodied men. That is the case upon which I spoke in a former address. That is the case on which I wish the House to fix its attention, and to pronounce upon the mode of relief which ought to be adopted. It is in that respect that I think the law of England is sufficient, and I ask you to make the law of Ireland for the same purpose. Take the case which occurred shortly after the English law came into operation, when great distress prevailed in Nottingham; the workhouses became full, and crowds of able-bodied men pressed for relief. And what was the course adopted? It was to give these able-bodied men some task of labour to show that they were destitute; and they were afforded relief in food to prevent them from starving. I ask the House to consent to the same arrangement as regards Ireland, when the workhouses are full, so as to prevent the guardians from saying to the able-bodied applicants for relief, "The workhouses are full, we cannot receive you; we know that you have no alternative but to die of starvation, but the law prevents us from affording you relief." It is to meet that case that I propose the arrangement provided for in the Bill. I am much afraid that in the year before us, although I trust that nothing like the suddenness or extent of the present calamity will again be experienced, still you may have serious distress in Ireland to contend with. The hon. Gentleman (Mr. Young) has said, and said truly, that there are in Ireland a greater number of labourers compared with the number of acres, than there are in the best cultivated parts of England. Well, 248 but these persons must, in some way or other, he provided for. This state of things has grown up, owing, I think, to the unfortunate confidence placed by the poorest classes, as well as by the richest, on the permanence of the potato as an article of food. We cannot expect that the potato ever again will supply permanent food to the classes hitherto dependent upon it. The crops that must take its place, will not at first—perhaps not for some time—supply the quantity of food which the potato did; but then I should say that, in order that the destitute should be sustained, and that the land should be cultivated in future, you have no resource so good, no resource so much approved by experience, as charging the property of Ireland with the expense of maintaining the destitute; and that, with respect to the ordinary state of the country, or the punishment and suppression of vagracy and mendicancy, and the putting down of those habits which disgrace and demoralise a people, nothing can be more effectual than the practical application of the principle I have mentioned. I believe, likewise, that no policy can be so good in the way of inducing the landowners and farmers to cultivate the land to the best advantage; for it is evident, that it is the interest of all who hold or who occupy land, that, instead of having the population employed in useless works, to be paid for out of the rates, it will be better to employ labour in the cultivation of the soil. We must expect, if Ireland is to flourish, that a much greater extent of land shall be cultivated. We cannot look for the prosperity of that country, if a greater space be not employed in the production of food. We cannot expect that the population of that country shall be comfortable or happy, unless this be the case. It is not to be supposed that the vast transition which is to take place, will not be one of great difficulty, and accompanied with great distress. But it behoves not the Government only, but all who have any interest in Ireland, to consider all the means by which the change may be best brought about; and I believe there are no means so likely as those suggested by Sir Robert Kane in his excellent work. The hon. Gentleman (Mr. Young) says that the Irish peasant is unskilful, and is not likely to be otherwise for a long time. I believe in that respect, as in many others, that the facilities hitherto possessed of procuring with very little labour the means of living an idle 249 and sluggish life—the very great facilities which existed of procuring a little food, the neglect of all other considerations, the resting content with the most wretched clothing and shelter—I believe that these circumstances are the great cause of the want of skill on the part of the Irish peasant. I regard the present unfortunate state of things as a cause why the landlords and farmers of Ireland should be induced to devote all their energies to the cultivation of the soil, and that the result will be a great improvement in the habits of the labouring population in future years. I believe that there is no labourer more capable of converting his labour to greater advantage than the Irish labourer. In the course of the discussion which originated with the noble Lord opposite (Lord G. Bentinck), I had occasion to converse with many persons who were well able to form an opinion on that point; and they stated, that, although for the first fortnight the Irish labourer cannot use his tools skilfully, although he has a good deal to learn, yet it is astonishing how rapidly his instruction goes on; and that when a month or six weeks have elapsed, many of these labourers are as capable as any other description of labourers. It is well known that many labourers leave this country to take employment on the railroads in France, and that the English labourer receives more wages than the French, his work being more valuable; but it has been found that the Irish labourer has attained an equally high position as the Englishman, has received as high wages, because he could do the same day's work, and was equally skilful and industrious. If that is the case, if such is the disposition and power of the Irish labourer, why should that power and industry not be turned to the cultivation of the land? What is to prevent the Irish labourer from becoming as skilful a ploughman, or as well versed in the rotation of crops, as the same class in England or Scotland? I believe that this will be the result of the present measure—that it will be the cause of now exertion among Irish landlords, farmers, and labourers. I believe, however, that in this respect there will be a great difference in different parts of Ireland. There are some parts as to which I own I look with considerable alarm; but there are other parts where every disposition has been exhibited to make exertions commensurate with the greatness of the emergency. In some parts the people seem to be struck down 250 by the greatness of their misfortunes, and have sunk into listlessness and despair; in other parts, the greatest exertions are making, a greater breadth of land has been sown than before, and the people are making up their minds to enter upon the new state of things before them. If we look to the history of the English Poor Law, we shall find in the first instance, that persons were sent to work by way of punishment, and marks of disgrace were imposed upon them; but latterly, after the abuses of the old system were corrected, recourse was had to the system which prevailed in the time of George I., of using the workhouse as a test—of requiring that those who came and asked for subsistence should be obliged, when there was room in the workhouse, to go into it, and thereby prove that they required food and shelter. If the test was submitted to, food and shelter were given, but not under circumstances which render these advantages more acceptable or agreeable than the able-bodied labourer could secure to himself by his own labour and industry. Such is the system which, I believe, has been one of the great sources of England's prosperity as a nation; and my firm belief is, that it was the giving of sustenance to the able-bodied labourer, and thus acquiring the power of suppressing vagrancy and mendicancy, and of reducing the whole of society to order, which was one of the reasons why the pursuits of trade, industry, and commerce have been so successful in this country. I feel all the difficulty of introducing this Bill at the present time; but I believe at the same time that it is necessary to carry it; I am convinced that it will be one of the very best securities for the future prosperity of Ireland; and I must say, that nothing I have heard this night has altered my opinion.
§ MR. LEFROY
spoke amidst much interruption. He defended the deputation which had waited upon the noble Lord, and of which he was one, from the remarks which had been made upon them by the noble Lord, especially as to their saying so little. As the noble Lord who was at the head of the deputation explained their views, he (Mr. Lefroy) and other members, felt it unnecessary to obtrude any observation upon the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell), who propounded propositions which completely astonished the whole deputation. [The hon. Member, amidst interruption, read the opinion of Dr. Doyle upon the subject of out-door relief, as well 251 as passages from the report of the Poor Law Commissioners.] He contended that the proposition of the noble Lord would double the number of persons at present in a state of destitution; and he urged the Government, before this measure was forced upon Ireland, to give the proprietors of land a more complete control over their property.
§ MR. ROSS
also endeavoured to speak amidst interruptions, and was understood to say, that he would reluctantly give his support to the Government on this occasion; for he could not blind his eyes to the fact that this was a perilous experiment for the country. He had seen a gentleman lately, well informed on these subjects, who stated, that from the failure of the potato, and the change which must be made to another species of food, he doubted whether less than a farm of ten acres would suffice to support a family. If this were true, what was to be done with the 350,000 persons who had hitherto subsisted on farms of less than five acres? He should, though, as he said, reluctantly, give his vote in favour of the Government, and against the Motion of the right hon. Recorder.
§ SIR H. W. BARRON
did not wish to obtrude upon the attention of hon. Members when he saw them so impatient; but he would beg hon. Gentlemen to recollect that this was a question which involved their property and almost their existence. This clause involved a principle in Ireland that was of the most alarming description. It was a case of life or death to many of them—to all of them he might say. The tenantry of Ireland would have to pay a considerable portion of this tax; and therefore it was a question which affected, not alone the landlords, but also four or five hundred thousand tenants in Ireland. He, however, confessed his unwillingness to do so ungracious a thing as to vote against the measure; but, to show how well founded were his apprehensions, he begged to refer to a return which he held in his hand. It appeared from that return, that the property in England rated for the poor rate amounted to up wards of 62,000,000l. yearly. The poor rates paid out of that amount to 5,000,000l. sterling; and with that sum about 1,500,000 paupers were supported. Now, they should have in Ireland, on the very lowest calculation, 2,300,000 of a similar class; and if in England it cost 5,000,000l. for the support of 1,500,000, what must be the calculation for supporting 2,300,000 paupers in Ireland, even in the 252 reduced manner they were supported in that country? He calculated the cost to be 2l. 7s. 6d. per head; so that a rental of 13,000,000l. yearly in Ireland would be saddled with a payment of at least 5,000,000l. a year.
§ MR. SHAW
said: In the impatient state of the House, I will ask but two minutes to explain my argument, to which the noble Lord (Lord J. Russell) has referred. For shortness, I will at once adopt his test—the 300,000 men employed on public works in Mayo. The noble Lord asks, how could my plan provide for these by in-door relief? My answer is — and it was the gist of my whole argument — if you tell them they shall have out-door relief, they will inevitably depend upon it; but if you promise them only in-door relief, they will exhaust every independent means of support before they resort to it. My proof is, the experience of the last nine years of their unwillingness to enter the workhouses; and that, within the last nine months, thousands—nay, millions, have flocked to the public works for out-door relief. Further, I said, if in-door relief is inadequate to the emergency, take what temporary measure it may require; and now, I conclude, as I began, by protesting against a Bill passed, despite of all principle and all authority, amidst the cry of famine and death from Ireland; clamour out of doors in England; and excitement, impatience and noise, in this House.
§ The Committee divided, on the Question, that the Clause as amended stand part of the Bill:—Ayes 242; Noes 30: Majority 206.
|List of the AYES.|
|Acheson, Visct.||Bell, M.|
|Acland, T. D.||Bellew, R. M.|
|A'Court, Capt.||Bennet, P.|
|Aglionby, H. A.||Bentinck, Lord G.|
|Aldam, W.||Bentinck, Lord H.|
|Allix, J. P.||Beresford, Maj.|
|Anson, hon. Col.||Berkeley, hon. C.|
|Antrobus, E.||Berkeley, hon. Capt.|
|Archbold, R.||Berkeley, hon. H. F.|
|Arkwright, G.||Bernal, R.|
|Arundel and Surrey, Earl of||Blackstone, W. S.|
|Blake, M. J.|
|Austen, Col.||Bodkin, J. J.|
|Bailey, J.||Botfield, B.|
|Baine, W.||Bouverie, hon. E. P.|
|Balfour, J. M.||Bowring, Dr.|
|Bannerman, A.||Broadwood, H.|
|Barclay, D.||Brotherton, J.|
|Barkly, H.||Brown, W.|
|Baring, rt. hon. F. T.||Browne, R. D.|
|Barnard, E. G.||Browne, hon. W.|
|Barron, Sir H. W.||Buck, L. W.|
|Baskerville, T. B. M.||Bulkeley, Sir R. B. W.|
|Buller, C.||Hamilton, W. J.|
|Buller, E.||Harris, hon. Capt.|
|Busfeild, W.||Hastie, A.|
|Byng, rt. hon. G. S.||Hatton, Capt. V.|
|Callaghan, D.||Hawes, B.|
|Cardwell, E.||Heathcoat, J.|
|Carew, hon. R. S.||Heneage, G. H.|
|Carew, W. H. P.||Heneage, E.|
|Cavendish, hon. C. C.||Henley, J. W.|
|Cayley, E. S.||Herbert, rt. hon. S.|
|Chandos, Marq. of||Hildyard, T. B. T.|
|Chelsea, Visct.||Hindley, C.|
|Cholmeley, Sir M.||Hobhouse, rt. hn. Sir J.|
|Christopher, R. A.||Hodgson, F.|
|Churchill, Lord A. S.||Hodgson, R.|
|Clay, Sir W.||Hope, G. W.|
|Clayton, R. R.||Hoskins, K.|
|Clerk, rt. hon. Sir G.||Howard, hn. C. W. G.|
|Clive, hon. R. H.||Howard, hn. E. G. G.|
|Collett, W. R.||Howard, P. H.|
|Colville, C. R.||Hudson, G.|
|Courtenay, Lord||Hutt, W.|
|Cowper, hon. W. F.||Inglis, Sir R. H.|
|Craig, W. G.||James, Sir W. C.|
|Crawford, W. S.||Jermyn, Earl|
|Cripps, W.||Jervis, Sir J.|
|Dalmeny, Lord||Johnson, Gen.|
|Dawson, hon. T. V.||Johnstone, Sir J.|
|Denison, J. E.||Jolliffe, Sir W. G. H.|
|Dennistoun, J.||Jones, Capt.|
|Dickinson, F. H.||Kemble, H.|
|Disraeli, B.||Labouchere, rt. hn. H.|
|Dodd, G.||Lambton, H.|
|Douglas, Sir H.||Lascelles, hon. W. S.|
|Douglas, Sir C. E.||Lawless, hon. C.|
|Duncan, Visct.||Layard, Maj.|
|Duncan, G.||Legh, G. C.|
|Dundas, Adm.||Le Marchant, Sir D.|
|Dundas, F.||Lemon, Sir C.|
|Dundas, Sir D.||Lennox, Lord G. H. G.|
|Egerton, W. T.||Lincoln, Earl of|
|Ellice, rt. hon. E.||Lindsay, Col.|
|Ellice, E.||Lygon, hon. Gen.|
|Ellis, W.||Macaulay, rt. hn. T. B.|
|Emlyn, Visct.||M'Carthy, A.|
|Escott, B.||M'Donnell, J. M.|
|Evans, W.||M'Taggart, Sir J.|
|Ewart, W.||Mangles, R. D.|
|Fielden, J.||Manners, Lord J.|
|Ferguson, Col.||March, Earl of|
|Ferguson, Sir R. A.||Marshall, W.|
|Ferrand, W. B.||Martin, J.|
|Finch, G.||Maule, rt. hon. F.|
|Fitzgerald, R. A.||Mitchell, T. A.|
|Fitzmaurice, hon. W.||Monahan, J. H.|
|Fitzroy, hon. H.||Morris, D.|
|Fitzroy, Lord C.||Mostyn, hon. E. M. L.|
|Forster, M.||Mundy, E. M.|
|Fox, C. R.||Muntz, G. F.|
|Fuller, A. E.||Napier, Sir C.|
|Gaskell, J. M.||Newdegate, C. N.|
|Glynne, Sir S. R.||Northland, Visct.|
|Gore, hon. R.||O'Brien, A. S.|
|Goring, C.||O'Brien, W. S.|
|Goulburn, rt. hon. H.||O'Brien, T.|
|Graham, rt. hon. Sir J.||O'Connell, D., jun.|
|Granby, Marq. of||O'Connell, M. J.|
|Grey, rt. hon. Sir G.||O'Connell, J.|
|Grosvenor, Lord R.||O'Conor Don|
|Grosvenor, Earl||Ogle, S. C. H.|
|Guest, Sir J.||Owen, Sir J.|
|Hall, Sir B.||Pakington, Sir J.|
|Hall, Col.||Palmer, R.|
|Parker, J.||Stuart, W. V.|
|Patten, J. W.||Strutt, rt. hon. E.|
|Peel, rt. hon. Sir R.||Tancred, H. W.|
|Plumridge, Capt.||Thornely, T.|
|Polhill, F.||Tollemache, J.|
|Protheroe, E. D.||Towneley, J.|
|Pusey, P.||Trotter, J.|
|Rawdon, Col.||Tuite, H. M.|
|Reid, Col.||Tyrell, Sir J. T.|
|Repton, G. W. J.||Vane, Lord H.|
|Rice, E. R.||Villiers, hon. C.|
|Rich, H.||Villiers, Visct.|
|Rolleston, Col.||Waddington, H. S.|
|Ross, D. R.||Wakley, T.|
|Russell, Lord J.||Walker, R.|
|Russell, J. D. W.||Walpole, S. H.|
|Scrope, G. P.||Ward, H. G.|
|Sheil, rt. hon. R. L.||Wawn, J. T.|
|Sibthorp, Col.||Williams, W.|
|Smith, J. A.||Wilshere, W.|
|Smith, rt. hon. R. V.||Wood, rt. hon. Sir C.|
|Somers, J. P.||Worcester, Marq. of|
|Somerset, Lord G.||Wyse, T.|
|Somerville, Sir W. M.||Yorke, H. R.|
|Stanley, hon. W. O.||Hill, Lord M.|
|Stuart, Lord J.||Tufnell, H.|
|List of the NOES.|
|Acton, Col.||Kirk, P.|
|Adderley, C. B.||Lefroy, A.|
|Bateson, T.||Leslie, C. P.|
|Brooke, Lord||Macnamara, Maj.|
|Brooke, Sir A. B.||Maunsell, T. P.|
|Bruen, Colonel||Maxwell, hon. J. P.|
|Bunbury, W. M.||Milnes, R. M.|
|Chapman, B.||Milton, Visct.|
|Chichester, Lord J. L.||Newry, Visct.|
|Cole, hon. H. A.||Shirley, E. J.|
|Colebrooke, Sir T. E.||Shirley, E. P.|
|Coote, Sir C. H.||Taylor, E.|
|Corry, rt. hon. H.||Verner, Sir W.|
|Damer, hon. Col.||Vesey, hon. T.|
|Gore, W. R. O.||Walsh, Sir J. B.|
|Gregory, W. H.||Wrightson, W. B.|
|Hamilton, J. H.||TELLERS.|
|Hamilton, G. A.||Shaw, H.|
|Hill, Lord E.||Young, T.|
§ House resumed.
§ House adjourned a quarter before One o'clock.