HC Deb 23 February 1880 vol 250 c1190

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, If his attention has been called to a Return just delivered, relating to Holloway Prison, from which it appears that, out of about 900 committals for the year 1878, nearly 500 were simply for "non-payment;" and if Her Majesty's Government will legislate to remove the anomaly that, under a fiction of law, imprisonment for non-payment of small debts largely continues, while imprisonment for debts over £50 has been abolished?


Sir, I hope the House will excuse me from entering into a matter of this kind in answer to a Question. It is a large subject, and I cannot make my views intelligible in merely answering a Question. I am bound, however, to state that my opinions on this matter have undergone considerable change since the Committee sat some time ago.