HC Deb 14 April 1887 vol 313 cc988-9

(Mr. Howard Vincent, Lord Randolph Spencer Churchill, Sir Henry Selwin-Ibbetson, Mr. Hoare, Mr. Addison, Mr. Hastings, Mr. Law-son, Mr. Molloy.)


Order for Committee read.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That Mr. Speaker do now leave the Chair."—(Mr. Howard Vincent.)

MR. T. M. HEALY (Longford, N.)

This appears to be a good Bill so far as England is concerned; but I think that any proposal to enlarge the discretion of magistrates ought to be severely criticized. Our constant experience in Ireland is, that magistrates discriminate and differentiate as between persons who come before them. As an instance of this, take the notorious case of the threatening-letter writer at Wicklow. I say that our experience leads us to believe that the magistrates, whose power is to be enlarged by this Bill, will discriminate, and while they apply the Bill to juvenile offenders of the richer classes, they will send Tom, Dick, and Harry to reformatories. I say that all the reforms which contemplate the ap- plication of existing English law to Ireland are simply abused, and I do not believe that this Act will be honestly administered. I believe it may be corruptly administered by the "Great Unpaid." As an Irish Member, I think we ought to have our say in this matter; and, therefore, I think it desirable that the hon. Member for Sheffield (Mr. Howard Vincent) should give us a little time for looking into the Bill before it goes into Committee. So far as I am concerned, I guarantee that it will not be blocked; but I think it is a rather strong course to push a Bill of this importance at so late an hour.


If the Motion before us is agreed to, I understand there will be no objection to deferring the further consideration of the Bill for a fortnight. My hon. Friend (Mr. Howard Vincent), I believe, only wishes to take the Committee stage pro formâ.

Question put, and agreed to.

Bill considered in Committee.

(In the Committee.)

Clause 1.

Motion made, and Question, "That the Chairman do report Progress, and ask leave to sit again,"—(Mr. Howard Vincent,)—put, and agreed to.

Committee report Progress; to sit again upon Thursday 28th April.

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