HC Deb 14 July 1913 vol 55 c884

asked the Home Secretary whether his attention has been called to the recent prosecution in Waterford of the manager of a factory called the Glen Laundry; whether, on the defendant being convicted of having obstructed the inspector in the execution of her duties, he was fined 5s., and on pleading guilty to the illegal employment of a girl of fourteen without a certificate of fitness he was fined ld. by the bench of magistrates; and what steps he proposes to take, in view of the inadequacy of such penalties in the case of serious breaches of the law?


I have received a report of this case from the chief inspector of factories. The facts are as stated in the question, but the amount of the penalties is a matter within the discretion of the justices, and I have no power to require them to be increased.


asked the Home Secretary whether the Home Office has at any time issued a circular to magistrates calling their attention to the ineffectiveness of nominal penalties, such as those recently imposed in the Glen Laundry case in Waterford, to maintain respect for the law; and whether, in view of the not infrequent imposition of such penalties, he will cause such a circular to be issued or, if previously issued, to be circulated afresh to magistrates throughout the United Kingdom?


The Department has never, so far as I am aware, issued such a circular, and I do not think it would be advisable to do so.