HC Deb 17 March 1913 vol 50 cc693-4
29. Major HOPE

asked the Secretary for Scotland if his attention has been drawn to a speech delivered in the New Café, St. Andrew Square, Glasgow, on 28th January by the medical officer of the Duke Street prison, in which he stated that institutions were a fraud and an expensive one at that, and that the Borstal Institution was the latest patent humbug; and will he say what action he proposes to take in regard to this officer, who is a public salaried official, part of whose duties are to administer the Prevention of Crime Act, 1908, providing for the transference to Borstal institutions?


Yes, Sir, the matter has been inquired into by the Prison Commissioners. The medical officer denies that the report accurately represents the opinions he expressed. The meeting was in Edinburgh, not Glasgow.

Major HOPE

May I ask if the medical officer will disavow the views which he is reported in the papers to have expressed, and which have never been publicly disavowed?


He denies the accuracy of the report as expressing his views.


May I ask whether institutions, including the Borstal Institution, are matters of party politics, whether they came within the scope of this officer's duties, and whether any expression of opinion by him on matters which are not party matters and which do not come within the scope of his duties are likely to prejudice him in the performance of his duties?


I do not think it is a party matter at all.