§ * MR. LOGAN (Leicestershire, Harborough)
I beg to ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, if his attention has been directed to proceedings in the North London Police Court, on the 11th Instant, when an application was made for a certificate of exemption under the Vaccination Act, 1898, and refused, apparently on the ground that the applicant declined to entered into a discussion with the presiding magistrate; and whether he proposes to take any action in the matter.
§ * THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. RITCHIE,) Croydon
I have seen a newspaper cutting which the hon. Member has been good enough to send me. The law is that a person is not entitled to exemption unless he satisfies the Magistrate that he conscientiously believes that vaccination would be prejudicial to the health of the child in question. I gather from the newspaper cutting that the applicant in this case did not so satisfy the magistrate. There are no steps which I can take in the matter.
§ * MR. RITCHIE
No SIR. I cannot go into the mind of the magistrate as to what he considers to be a conscientious objection.
§ MR. THOMAS BAYLEY was understood to ask if a man could swear on oath that he had a conscientious objection.
§ * MR. SPEAKER
Order order! The question on the Paper, viz., whether the Home Secretary proposes to take any action in this case, has been answered in the negative by the right hon. Gentleman.