§ MR. GEORGE ROBERTS (Norwich)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether he has yet caused inquiry to be made from the Lunacy Commissioners as to the number of hours worked by asylum attendants, and the percentage of these attendants who ultimately suffer from lunacy; if so, can he state the results of such inquiry; and whether he proposes legislation on the matter.
§ *THE SECRETARY OF STATE FOR THE HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. GLADSTONE,) Leeds, W.
I beg to answer this Question on behalf of my right hon. friend. Information on this subject has been collected by the Commissioners in Lunacy. The particulars of the hours during which attendants are on duty cannot well be summarised, but the returns are at my hon. friend's disposal at the Commissioners' office whenever he may care to call and see them. It appears that 706 during the last five years fifty-two attendants and ex-attendants (twenty-three male and twenty-nine female) are known to have become insane; that is to say, that, roughly speaking, in any given year 1 per cent, of the average total number of attendants employed in asylums become insane. This figure is slightly in excess of the percentage of insanity in the general population between the ages of twenty and fifty-four. The terms on which asylum attendants are employed is a matter for the Visiting Committees, and I do not propose to introduce legislation on the subject.