§ MR. R. HARCOURT (Montrose Burghs)
I beg to ask the President of the Local Government Board whether, even if it is not thought necessary to call for reports from all local authorities 239 as was done in 1895, during an inquiry by a Select Committee into distress owing to lack of employment, he will, in co-operation with the Local Government Board for Scotland, consider the advisability of laying before Parliament at an early date the reports of inspectors dealing with large provincial centres, noted at page 337 of the Labour Gazette. as being specially subject to distress, such as Bradford, Bristol, Sunderland, and Glasgow.
THE PRESIDENT OF THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT BOARD (Mr. JOHN-BURNS,) Battersea
The Reports which I have received from the inspectors with regard to distress arising from want of employment are confidential documents intended only for the use of the Department, and I could not properly lay them on the Table. I may add that I am in frequent communication with the local authorities of the English towns named in the Question.
§ MR. R. HARCOURT
IS the right hon. Gentleman aware that the Secretary of State for India has consented to lay before Parliament a Report on the relief operations there, and cannot that example be followed in this country?
§ MR. JOHN BURNS
There is no comparison between the circumstances of this country and the special crcumstances of India. I may inform my hon. friend that, as far as London is concerned, we have weekly Returns of pauperism and county Returns monthly. Then we have the Labour Gazette Returns monthly, and half-yearly and annual Returns of pauperism, in addition to the annual Reports on the administration of the Unemployed Workmen Act.