§ MR. E. H. LAMB (Rochester)
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department; whether he can now make any statement with reference to the petition of the prison officers in His Majesty's local prisons.
(Answered by Mr. Secretary Gladstone.) I am glad to be in a position to announce the grant of considerable benefits to the local prison staff'. After consultation with the Prison Commissioners, I found it impossible to accept the view that the duties of the local prison officers were as onerous and dangerous as those of the convict prison staff, or entitled them to the same remuneration; but I was able to recommend considerable improvements in their pay, which the Treasury have now sanctioned. The maximum pay of assistant warders, warders, and principal warders has been advanced to £70, £80, and £95 respectively: and the annual rates of increment of the warders, principal warders, and third class chief warders are increased from £1 to £1 10s., £2, and £3 respectively. Further, the lodging allowance in lieu of official quarters will no longer be limited to 5s. a week, but will vary according to the requirements of different localities up to a maximum of 6s. 6d. There will also be a considerable improvement in the pay of the engineers. I trust that these concessions, which will of course involve an increased charge in the Prison Vote, and will take effect from 85 the beginning of the next financial year, will give satisfaction to a hard-working class of officers whose duties have of late years become heavier and more exacting.