§ 66 and 67. Mr. CURRIE
asked the Home Secretary (1) whether, in view of the prevalence of alcoholic recidivism, he will take steps, by legislation or otherwise, to confer further powers upon magistrates to deal with it by prolonged detention orders for curative treatment; and (2) whether he will introduce legislation to enable magistrates to sentence men repeatedly convicted on charges of drunkenness to perform labour tasks of public utility, such as scavenging, instead of imposing nominal fines?
§ Sir G. CAVE
A Bill dealing with the subject of habitual drunkenness was introduced by the Home Secretary in 1914, but had to be dropped on the outbreak of war. The subject is too difficult and controversial to be taken up again at the present time.
§ 68. Mr. CURRIE
asked the Home Secretary whether the statistics of Police Court records as at present compiled afford information as to the number of charges of and convictions for repeated and habitual drunkenness; and, if so, how many convictions for offences ranking as a fourth offence and upwards have been recorded in London, Liverpool, Newcastle, and Glasgow within the last five years?
§ Sir G. CAVE
Statistics of the nature indicated by the hon. Member were formerly procured so far as possible as regards England and Wales, and given in Table VI., column 14, of the Annual Volume of Licensing Statistics, but they have been discontinued since the War, in order to save labour and printing. I regret, therefore, that I am not in a position to supply the hon. Member with the figures for which he asks.