§ Mr. LANSBURY
asked whether the President of the Local Government Board has observed during the last few years that many of the persons whose deaths in the Metropolis are returned as having been occasioned by starvation or privation made, as far as is known, no application to the relieving officer; whether he will state in what way or through what power the borough councils can exercise their powers as overseers of the poor so that persons in sudden and urgent necessity or suffering from sudden and dangerous illness may, in accordance with 43 Eliz., c. 2, and 4 and 5 Will. IV., c. 78, s. 54, apply to the borough councils as overseers for necessary relief; whether the Local Government Board has made any order under the Local Government Act, 1894, 863 Section 33, conferring on any urban district councils the powers of appointment of overseers or the powers and duties of overseers as to relief of the poor, and if so, on what district councils; and whether, as many new appointments of relieving officers or assistant relieving officers are being made, the Local Government Board will issue to them a circular of instructions as to their duties as to relief of the poor in cases of sudden or urgent necessity, and also instructing them as to their duty, under Regulation No. 2 of Article 215 of the General Consolidated Order of 24th July, 1847, to record in the application and report book every application for relief however dealt with?
§ Mr. BURNS
I am aware that cases of the kind referred to in the first part of the hon. Member's question are to be found in the Annual Returns issued on the subject. I do not think Metropolitan borough councils could usefully exercise the powers of overseers with respect to the giving of poor relief in cases of emergency. The Local Government Board have made a number of Orders conferring on borough and urban district councils the power of appointing overseers, but they have not issued any Order conferring on a council the powers of overseers with respect to the relief of the poor. As regards the last part of the question, perhaps I may remind the hon. Member that the new relief Order, which requires the keeping of case papers, came into force to-day.
§ Mr. LANSBURY
May I ask whether the relieving officer will be compelled to keep a record in every case of an application made to him for relief, and the manner in which it is dealt with?