§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That a Supplementary sum, not exceeding £5, be granted to His Majesty to defray the Charge which will come in course of payment during the year ending on the 31st day of March, 1914, for the 1839 Salaries and Expenses of the Office of the Inspector of Reformatories, and for the Maintenance of Juvenile Offenders in Reformatory, Industrial, and Day Industrial Schools, and in Places of Detention under the Children Act, in Great Britain."
§ Mr. HOARE
I have one or two questions that I wish to ask the Under-Secretary to the Home Office before we decide upon this Vote. The Committee will notice that the amount is really much more than £5. The £5 here refers to an incorrect Estimate. On the one side, the expenditure side, there is a sum of £3,400, and on the receipt side there is an amount of £1,500. This estimate, therefore, shows that about £6,000 was wrongly estimated when the annual Estimates were drawn up for the amount of £280,390. The Estimate, therefore, is a more serious one than immediately appears, though hon. Members see that there is only the sum of £5 at the head of the page. In regard to the questions which I am going to ask the Under-Secretary, I should like to say at once that my criticisms of industrial schools and reformatories with which these Estimates are concerned, are in no way hostile. I do not think that any branch of public work can show better results than our industrial schools and reformatories. In the last report which was issued, only a few weeks ago, it was shown that, so far as industrial schools are concerned, no less than 88 per cent, of the boys who have left them during the last three years are reported to be in regular employment.
This is a matter for the general Estimates, not for the Supplementary Vote of £5. We can only discuss the cause for this increased Grant asked for from the Committee.
§ Mr. HOARE
I was only referring to the matter by way of illustration. The Committee will see that there is a large increase in the number of committals to these schools, and I want to ask to what that increase is due. Various reasons would suggest that the number of children committed to the industrial schools should be diminishing rather than increasing. I am aware that when the Children Act came into operation it was expected that more children would be committed to the industrial, schools. But that Act came into operation four years ago, and I think, therefore, it cannot be said that there can now be any unexpected increase of 1840 committals as the result of that Act, which came into operation on the 1st of April, 1909. There is another reason why one would expect, at first sight, that the number of boys and girls admitted to these institutions would not increase. There was a time when a large number of truants were committed to these schools, but as a result of the efficient way in which the school attendance laws are now administered, the truants, at any rate in London, have almost wholly disappeared. Two of the truant schools have actually been abolished in London. That would suggest that the number of children committed under the Truants Act would be diminishing, and that the Home Office, far from wanting provision for more children in industrial schools, as estimated, would want less provision. There is another reason still. In the footnote at the bottom of this page of the Estimate allusion is made to the period of good trade through which the country is passing. There again you would have thought that the result of the period of good trade would be a diminution in the number of children committed to industrial schools and reformatories. At one time I was engaged closely upon work connected with the committal of children in the county of London, and I was much struck by the fact that in a very large proportion of those cases the reason of the small crimes or misdemeanours for which the children were committed was poverty. But in view of the good trade of the last year one would have supposed that the reason of poverty would not have been so insistent, that children for instance would not have been driven into petty thefts of food, which was a very common source of committal to industrial schools, and that there would have been no unexpected rise in the numbers for which provision was made in the Annual Estimate.
In that connection there is one further question I should like to ask the Undersecretary. I have seen it stated that the picture palaces have added to the number, and that the reason of the addition is, that during the last year there have been committals to industrial schools and reformatories, due to thefts of small sums of money with the object of getting into picture palaces. I would like to ask the Under-Secretary whether that fact is supported by his statistics, and whether there is any substance in their complaint. If there be, it would be in 1841 some sense an explanation of the increase which this Estimate involves. In studying the last report of the industrial schools, I notice also that the number of children committed to the Scottish schools is decreasing. I think that is due to some legislative change in Scotland. That also would strengthen what I have been suggesting, that all these various factors, separately or combined, would tend to the diminution rather than to the increase of the children in those institutions. I observe that the last available figures show that the number of girls committed to those institutions is increasing at a greater rate than is in those of boys. Perhaps the Under-Secretary will be able to state the reason for that. The increase in the number of girls no doubt accounts to some extent for the expenditure anticipated in this Estimate of £3,400. It would be interesting to know why it is that more girls are being committed to industrial schools than boys. I come now to the item connected with the receipts:—Owing to the activity of trade and consequent general employment, the amount received in respect of parental contributions has been larger than was anticipated7.0 P.M.
I should like to ask, in that connection, how has it increased. Is it due to more stringent administration, and is it not a fact that during the last two years the officials, whose duty it is to collect the contributions from the parents, have been much more energetic in their efforts? Would it not be more correct to say that the £l,500 increase in the receipts was due to this increased activity as well as to the period of better trade to which reference is made? There is one further question, and that is whether any of this increase is due to the fact that better pay is being provided for the medical officers connected with industrial schools and reformatories. I understand that they are most inadequately paid at present, and I should welcome this Supplementary Estimate if I felt it was due in any degree to an increase in their pay, I have asked these questions in no spirit of hostility, and I do not intend to move a reduction if I receive a satisfactory answer from the Under-Secretary.
§ Mr. SAMUEL ROBERTS
I think hon. Gentlemen will agree that Supplementary Estimates upset the calculations of the preceding Budget. This item to-night is only for £5, but it is very similar to the Vote we had on the Census, where the real increase was hidden by Appropriations- 1842 in-Aid. This Vote is asked for the reason that there has been a large and unexpected increase in the number of children committed to those schools. I have no doubt the Under-Secretary will give a satisfactory reply, but I should have thought that the increase would have been pretty steady, and that the Department would have been able to calculate fairly accurately what the requirements were for the coming year. The increase now asked for amounts to £3,400, and out of this a sum of £1,895 will be met through savings under sub-heads of this foot. Will the Under-Secretary kindly say what those-sub-heads are on which those savings have been effected, as otherwise the hon. Gentleman would have had to ask for a larger amount.
§ Sir HENRY CRAIK
The discussion of this Supplementary Estimate raises a question of considerable importance, and it is extremely unlikely that we shall have any opportunity of discussing the industrial schools and this precise Vote during this Session. The question which is raised even within the narrow limits of this Vote is that the number of children committed to these industrial schools has increased so largely that you are obliged to ask for £3,400 more. That increase has upset your calculations, and has shown that the anticipation of the experts of the Home Office have been entirely deceived. The fact that the numbers at these industrial schools and reformatories, instead of decreasing rather show an increase, raises a point of very great importance. My lion. Friend the Member for Sheffield (Mr. S. Roberts) said he believed it was quite natural that there should be a slight increase.
§ Sir H. CRAIK
I entirely dissent. Why should there be an increase with all you are doing and have done for education? Why should you constantly have an increase in the number of those who are treated as criminals, and who are brought up not in the family, but are taken away from out of the hands of their parents, and put into these industrial schools? I would ask the Committee to note what has been the record of the numbers committed to these schools, and it will be seen that there has not been that normal increase which my hon. Friend supposes. I find that in the year 1861 the number of boys committed to industrial schools was 869, and in 1843 1911 the number was 875, or only a difference of six, and in 1861 there were committed 259 girls, and in 1911 only ninety-five, showing an enormous and most satisfactory decrease. Why is it now that all? our expectations are overturned, and that when you have got your Children's Act in operation, the numbers, instead of tending to decrease as you would wish, have increased, and have disappointed your experts? That has occurred, too, not in adverse circumstances, but at a time when we are obliged to admit that trade has been particularly good, and that actually the parents' contributions towards the upkeep of the children have increased. That state of matters discloses a deception of the anticipations of the experts after all our boasted work for education, and for the amelioration of the children. Here we have a number of children who, instead of being sent to the ordinary schools to be educated and to return to their families, are obliged to be sent to these industrial and reformatory schools away from their family, and after fifty years, during which there has been no marked increase in the committals, we have this large increase this year to face. Surely the Committee will agree that that is a state of matters which is not only startling, but disappointing, and that it requires a very full explanation, which I have no doubt the Under-Secretary will be able to give.
There is one point about this Estimate I do not like, and that is the transference of Votes from one sub head to another. That indicates slovenly accountancy, and it is done not by authority from Parliament, but merely by correspondence with the Treasury, and by obtaining Treasury sanction. We all have now and then had to use it, and I must confess to having been a sinner in some cases, but the less of it the better, and we ought to know exactly what the heads were on which the savings were effected, and those on which you -were obliged to spend more than you reckoned. That is a small accounting point to which I do not attach such great importance, but I do want to know from the Under-Secretary how he accounts for this disappointing episode in the history of these industrial schools, when, after all that has been done to improve the position of children, and of which we are so apt to boast, we are obliged to come to Parliament, owing to the unexpected increase in the number of children whom you can- 1844 not deal with in an ordinary school, but whom you are obliged to send away to an industrial school out of the charge of their parents.
§ Mr. CROOKS
In a different sphere from that of the hon. Member who has just spoken, I do know something about education. I know the need of it also. I have said a good many times there are no bad boys. What is the matter with them is that they are suffering from misdirected energy. I am not speaking of the mentally deficient boy, but most of the boys who have been committed to those schools and the girls have been committed for very slight offences. Sometimes, too, it is an easy way of getting rid of a troublesome boy or girl by getting that boy or girl committed to an industrial school. The boy or girl is then treated as a truant to be taken away from the education authority, and the cost of the training charged to the Home Office. It is forgotten that many of the industrial schools earn money by sending these poor little children to work that they would not be allowed to perform under the Education Act.
I must point out to the hon. Member that we can only debate on this Supplementary Vote, the causes which bring about the increased expenditure. Anything general dealing with the reformatory schools will come up on the Estimates for the year.
§ Mr. CROOKS
My point is, has this increased expenditure been in consequence of the abolition of the working of the boys in the industrial schools, and to keeping them, as they should be kept, in those schools to be trained and educated and not to perform such work?
§ Mr. CROOKS
I know all about that, but I am talking about earning capacity. You must remember you have also saved some money. I do not care much about the statement that the contributions from parents have gone up, because very great and serious hardships are inflicted in this way on the parents, and very often you rob the children at home by insisting on contributions for children in the reformatory. I do not want increases in the contribution by the parents unless it can be proved that the parents were negligent and responsible for the boy's downfall, and in that case I make no excuse for them. If 1845 the increase is caused by preventing the lads going to work, then I shall gladly vote for the extra expenditure.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
This increase is due to an increase in the number of boys and girls committed to reformatory schools. Therefore the question whether they did or did not do certain work in the reformatory schools does not arise. The hon. Member for Woolwich (Mr. Crooks) commenced by making the very startling statement that there were no bad boys. I do not know what he meant by that.
§ Mr. CROOKS
I meant that they were suffering from misdirected energy, like most Members of Parliament.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
I do not think that the energy, whether misdirected or not, would account for the badness in human nature. However that may be, it seems to me rather extraordinary that there should have been this increase in the numbers committed, after all the Acts we have been passing lately for the supposed welfare of children. With all the improvements which education is supposed to bring, one would have thought there would have been a decrease, and not an increase, in the number of children committed. I hope there is some satisfactory reason for this increase, otherwise it will show that the energies of hon. Members opposite have been misdirected in endeavouring to alter human nature by passing Acts of Parliament. The footnote on "Industrial Schools" says:—Additional sum required to meet a large and unexpected increase in the number of children committed to these schools. The total excess anticipated is £3,400, but of this sum £1,895 will be met from savings under other sub-heads of this Vote.The footnote on "Appropriations-in-Aid" says:—Owing to the activity of trade and consequent general employment, the amount received in respect of parental contributions has been larger than was anticipated.Does that mean that owing to the activity of trade and consequent general employment there has been more misdirected energy on the part of the children of the country? One would have thought that if trade and general employment had been more active, there would have been a diminution in the number of children committing offences for which they have to be sent to reformatory schools. I cannot agree with the hon. Member for Woolwich in his desire that the parents should not contribute. I believe I heard a cheer from my Noble Friend (Lord Robert Cecil) "when the hon. Member expressed that 1846 view. The only way of seeing that children are kept in proper order is to impose some penalty on the parents. If the parents are allowed to think that, by permitting their children to commit faults for which they can be sent to industrial schools, they will throw their cost upon the State, I am afraid that that parental supervision which is necessary will not be exercised as it should be. I do not propose to put the Committee to the trouble of a Division if the Under-Secretary's reply is satisfactory.
§ THE UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for the HOME DEPARTMENT (Mr. Ellis Griffith)
I do not know whether my reply will be as satisfactory as the hon. Baronet desires, but I will do my best. This Supplementary Vote really deals with two matters: First, the excess of the number of children committed; and, secondly, the greater amount of receipts from parental contributions. I have been asked many questions which, if I may say so, are extremely difficult to answer. Before attempting to answer them, may I explain that this excess of £3,400 is due, not only mainly, but entirely, to the fact that more children have been committed to these schools than we anticipated when the original Estimates were introduced. Comparing the figures for 1912 and 1913, there were 350 more children committed in 1913 than in 1912, and the year 1913 takes account of only three-fourths of the year with which we are dealing this afternoon. Against that £3,400 there was a saving of £1,895. The hon. Member for Glasgow University (Sir H. Craik) said that this transfer of savings was a vicious principle to introduce into the Estimates, and asked under which sub-heads the savings arose. The sub-heads under which savings were made were Reformatory Schools, England, and Industrial Schools, Scotland. That brings the deficit down to £l,505. Parental contributions are estimated at £1,500 more than was anticipated, leaving a balance of only £5 for which this Vote asks. It would not have been necessary to come for this Supplementary Vote had it not been necessary to get the sanction of the House to apply these parental contributions to the diminution of the £1,505. A question has been asked, "How is it that £3,400 is required more than was estimated?" It is due to the increase in the number of children committed. Several suggestions have been made to account for that. I have been asked whether cinema shows are at all responsible for it. I do 1847 no know whether they are or not, but I think it is a point worth inquiring into.
Personally, I think the causes are two. It is not that there are a greater number of bad children or of children whose energies are misdirected. As a matter of fact, all these statistics must be taken with a certain grain of caution. They will vary, not with the number of children who are bad, but entirely with the stringency with which the law is put into operation. That is really the point. I do not think we need take a pessimistic view of this increase. I believe that our reformatory and industrial schools are now in a more efficient and more satisfactory state than they have ever been. There have been difficulties, as we all know, but I think I can assure the Committee that these schools are, on the whole, in a more satisfactory and more efficient condition now than ever before. What is the result of that? There was a time when local authorities and magistrates had, to a large extent, lost confidence in these schools, with the result that local authorities would take no steps to have children sent to them, and magistrates in many cases refused to make the necessary orders. There has been a change in both these directions. The schools are so much more satisfactory that county councils and local authorities are taking steps, when they think the circumstances justify it, to put these remedial measures before the magistrates, and magistrates are much more willing than they formerly were to send children to reformatory schools.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
For the last year or two, I think. It is extremly difficult to assign a specific reason for a fact of this sort, but my own view certainly is that the increase in the number of children committed is due, first of all, to the improvement in the schools, and, secondly, to the fact that magistrates are more willing to commit than they were formerly. With regard to the Appropriations-in-Aid, everybody will admit that improvement in trade will make parents more able to contribute. On the other hand, one would have thought that, with the improvement in trade, parents would have been able to look after their children more efficiently, and that, consequently, the number of children committed would have diminished. However, I have only to state the 1848 specific fact, which is that it is the increase in the number of children committed which makes it necessary for us to come for this extra Grant.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
Oh, no; on a total of over 11,000. It is evidently not so serious as the hon. Gentleman thought. I hope that there will be another opportunity of discussing this question, as I shall then be able, if I am standing at this box, to satisfy the Committee that very great improvements have been made.
§ Lord HUGH CECIL
The speech of the Under-Secretary deserves the attention of the Committee, because the hon. Gentleman has pointed out, no doubt quite correctly, that the most probable causes of the increase in this Estimate are an increased stringency in administration, and, as he put it, an increased confidence in industrial schools. I would put it a little differently. I think there is a change in public opinion, and amongst magistrates themselves, which, in my view, is a very deplorable change, and which is better described as a diminished confidence in parents than an increased confidence in industrial schools. There is an increasing tendency, which no doubt this Estimate reflects, to think that a child does better out of the care of its parents. I believe that to be entirely untrue, except where the parents are really of an atrocious character. In the old days, when the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children was under the able management of Mr. Benjamin Waugh, it used to be the rule of the society never to withdraw children from the care of their parents, even when they were criminals, unless it was thought absolutely necessary. In the great majority of cases they thought it better to allow children to go back to the care of parents who had been sent to prison than to take them away, or to ask magistrates to send them to industrial schools. I am afraid that public opinion is changing now, and that the tendency is, where there is a legal opportunity, to send a child to an industrial school because the parents are not all that they should be. That is most deplorable.
1849 And it is extraordinarily cruel. Perhaps no greater cruelty can be inflicted in the name of the law than to take children away from their parents, to whom the children are often devoted, even when the parents are not in all respects what they ought to be. It is extraordinarily cruel, in my belief, and extraordinarily unwise. Even in the case of comparatively worthless parents it is often much better that they should have the custody of the child than that it should be in the best-managed and the most carefully organised industrial school. The parent is the rightful guardian of the child. If this Estimate is, as I am afraid it is, a sign that more and more children are being taken away from their parents, and cruelty, therefore, inflicted on the parents, I am sure that it is a very ill omen; and I think the system is one which we ought to do our best to make an emphatic protest against, for we believe it is not a good thing to send children away from their parents. We ought to stand by the old position that the family is the right place for the child to be brought up in, and that only in the most extreme cases of absolutely worthless parents is it right, fair, or kind to take the child away.
§ Sir JOHN JARDINE
I would like to ask as to whether, in late years, there has been increased accommodation in industrial and reformatory schools by the establishment of new ones? Beforetime, the county and borough benches in the country in the main did not know very much about these schools, and they may have hesitated to send delinquents straight off without making further inquiries. With reference to what the Noble Lord has said, I would be inclined to say, from experience of the magistrates, that they have not been in a hurry to send children away to industrial or reformatory schools. Besides, there are usually a number of magistrates on the bench, and each case brought up is carefully considered from every point of view. Some of the magistrates know all about the family, and, I think, they are always, or often, afraid of adding to the expenses of the county borough, or parish. They will consequently go a long way rather than take a child away from its home. It is only in cases where the bench is very well satisfied that the child might grow up a criminal that they will go to the length of sending it away, and not unless, indeed, the committal is urgently required. I should like to ask whether there is any authority that comes in, and that, without 1850 interfering with what the magistrates have done, as the time goes on, arranges, or can arrange, to allow some of these children to get back home again? We should all be glad to see this if it could be managed. It would tend to keep down the expenses that administration throws upon the ratepayer or taxpayer, or both.
§ Mr. WATSON RUTHERFORD
There is one very regrettable thing in connection with this Vote, and that is that it appears that during this past year £1,500 more has been collected from the parents than was anticipated, I do not know whether it is in order—I do not want to transgress the Rules of Order—but this extra collection is a significant part of this Vote. I have only one observation to make upon it, and it is this: A considerable acquaintance with portions of Liverpool has shown me that one of the greatest of hardships is paying the contribution for a child in an industrial school. It means paying out about twice as much as the child would cost, or could cost, at home. The terrible strain that it is upon many families to contribute this money is one of those things that some day ought to come before the Legislature in a practical shape. When the child is taken away from home immediately there is a payment week by week to the authorities for its support of a sum quite out of proportion to what the child would require at home. I know many many cases where the parents have gone to prison for not paying the contributions, which they have been totally unable to pay, and where all kinds of hardships and difficulties have arisen in consequence. I do not think it is an appropriate occasion on this Supplementary Vote to discuss anything in the nature of the principle of this payment or the method of collection, but I do think it is permissible to say that there is £l,500 more than was anticipated out of the parents under these very difficult conditions. It is permissible, at all events, to remark upon the fact and to express regret that such moneys are collected at all.
The hon. Member is quite in order in asking whether there has been any increased severity of collection, but further discussion of the principle must come on the main Vote.
§ Lord ROBERT CECIL
I join with other hon. Members who have expressed grave misgiving at the increase of this Vote. I 1851 do intensely dislike the increasing tendency to bully the poor in the name of social reform. You can see it in all directions. This is a very bad case indeed. I entirely support that which has fallen from the hon. Member for Liverpool. If this increase, as apparently is the case, consists of contributions, and it means still further oppression of the parents in order to make them pay these contributions, then I think it is a very serious matter and one that well deserves consideration by the Committee. I do not very often agree with what falls from hon. Members on the Labour Benches, but I find myself in complete agreement with the hon. Member for Woolwich. I believe this is a very serious matter indeed. Just consider what the position of a working man is who is faced with a demand of this kind! It may well be that there may have been such cases where, for some reason—it may have been the mistake of keeping the child from school repeatedly—the parent is faced with a prosecution. It is no use telling him that in effect that he can defend himself; can present to the tribunal a sound defence. It means the loss of money to him even if he is successful in his case. It may mean a fatal loss of money. It means that he has got to give up a day's work. It may mean more than a day's work. It may mean that he may lose his job altogether. These things happen constantly. Oppression in the name of education is really scandalous at the present time. Some day—I know I must not go further into the matter now on this Vote; — but some day I hope to have an opportunity of presenting this very serious grievance, not only to the individual, but to the public health. In this case I do very much invite the Committee carefully to consider whether we shall be justified in sanctioning this increase.
I know that it is almost always the case that in a Supplementary Estimate the House of Commons is really quite powerless. The money has been spent. We cannot very well say that he—I do not know who—has to pay the money out of his own pocket. We have got to pay the money, and we can only make our protest. But I do very earnestly protest against the increase of this Industrial School Vote. I hope very careful inquiry will be made, not only into the question of the increase of the industrial schools—in which I am entirely in accord with the Noble Lord 1852 the Member for Oxford University—but also into the way in which these additional parental contributions have been obtained. If it is really an increase entirely obtained out of the pockets of worthless parents who have neglected their children, and who have spent their money in drink, or whatever it may be, I agree with the hon. Member for Woolwich that parents of that type are not entitled to much consideration. I do not, however, for a moment believe that most of this money has been obtained from parents of that description. The great mass of it has been obtained from parents who, on the whole, have tried to do their duty to their children, and have failed from matters beyond their control. I regard this kind of administration and this kind of legislation with profound misgiving, and personally, if anybody divides the Committee against the Vote, I shall join them.
§ Mr. A. A. ALLEN
I entirely agree that it is only in the last resort that these children should be taken from their homes and sent to industrial schools or reformatories. But the fact of the matter is that in every locality there are a considerable number of homos in which it is practically impossible to keep the children. Undoubtedly in these schools the children have an infinitely better chance than they would have in some of the worst homes in these localities. I think—though I may be wrong—that the increase of this Vote is not due to increased stringency in the execution of the law throughout the country, but to the fact that in certain localities where in the past little or nothing: has been done in the way of administering the Acts m connection with industrial or reformatory schools, the authorities have at last awakened to the fact that they have got a duty to perform to the children and to the locality. I have been brought closely into touch with this matter, for I have sat for very nearly two years on the Committee which inquired into industrial schools. We had evidence before us that in a good portion of the country, in many localities, practically nothing was being done under the Acts, and that the Clauses governing these matters were practically a dead-letter. Whatever we may think about the evil of removing children from their parents, in every part of the community the Act ought to be administered where it is necessary, for in these parts of the country there are some children, at any rate, who are living under such conditions that they must get on better in 1853 these schools. Part of the increase in the Vote may be due to the fact that local authorities are waking up to their duty. No doubt there are occasional cases of hardship in the cases of contributions, but I think if hon. Members will consider the statistics they will see that there are enormous sums that are remitted every year, on it being shown that the parents are unable to pay them. Probably half the amount of the total contributions which the parents are supposed to pay is remitted. Parents have been able to pay more this year owing to better trade.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
I just want to follow up one remark made by the Noble Lord (Lord Robert Cecil). I understood him to say that the money had been spent. Surely that is a mistake? The money has not, I understand, been spent. Supplementary Estimates are surely to obtain the sanction of the House of Commons to the spending of the money? This is an important point, and I should like to know the reason why this is done.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
I thought I explained to the hon. Baronet that the essence of this Vote is to enable us to appropriate £1,500, which otherwise would go to the Exchequer, and to get that we have only to introduce this token Vote for £5.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
It is very difficult to say about any particular sum. Of course, the whole of the sum will have to be spent tip to 31st March. It is not that this particular £1,500 has been spent.
§ Sir F. BANBURY
That is really the point. Sanction was given to a certain sum put down in the original Estimate. It does not matter how the original sum is going to be provided. The hon. Gentle-man, I think, is quite right in saying that in order to obtain the surplus he must put down a token Vote and get the sanction of the House of Commons, but he is not right in spending more than was originally allowed without the sanction of the House of Commons.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
As the hon. Baronet knows, the total Estimate was £280,000. That would work out at some- 1854 thing like £20,000 a month. Of course, all the money has not yet been spent, because there is a month and a half to go.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
Nothing like it. There is a month and a half still to go. These are Estimates for money we want up to 31st March.
§ Lord HUGH CECIL
Did not the hon. Gentleman say this was necessary in order to sanction the appropriation? Surely that is not technically so, because the £5 is artificially put in as a mere coincidence-to make it necessary to come to this House for that £5, in order that this large financial transaction should not be done behind the back of the House of Commons. They put down an artificial £5 in order to make it an Estimate.
§ Sir HENRY CRAIK
Is not the case this: So much stands to the credit of the Department under particular sub-heads. If any one of these is exceeded the Controller and Auditor-General would report upon the matter. He would have already included certain obligations for these industrial schools and reformatories to be-paid to their income, and before the 31st March you would be obliged to implement that which they have undertaken to pay and as there are a larger number of inmates you exceed the amount.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
As I explained, we want £3,400 more than we anticipated we would want up to 31st March this year. Out of that £3,400 the sum of £1,895 has been spent. That leaves £1,505 to be met, and we are to meet that by appropriating £1,500 and by this token Vote of £5 for which we come here now to get sanction.
§ Mr. ELLIS GRIFFITH
I am afraid the Treasury rule operates harshly against us, and that is why we have come here and ask for this Vote of £5.
§ Question put, and agreed to.