HC Deb 13 March 1918 vol 104 cc305-6
44. Mr. FERENS

asked the President of the Local Government Board if he is aware that certificates of death have been refused by registrars until the sugar card of the deceased had been produced; and will he take steps to stop such a practice?


(by Private, Notice) asked the President of the Local Government Board what steps he is taking in respect of registrars who refuse to issue death certificates until the sugar card has been surrendered; and whether he desires to modify his previous statement that there was no foundation for the suggestion that this was taking place.


I much regret that in giving the reply to the hon. Member's question on the 6th instant, I had not been informed that, owing to an erroneous interpretation of the Instructions issued by the Registrar-General, instances had occurred in which death certificates had been withheld by registrars owing to failure to produce the deceased's sugar card. I have been in communication with the Registrar-General, and a further Instruction has now been issued by him to all registrars, drawing special attention to the fact that they are under no circumstances to refuse to issue a death certificate for this reason, though they are enjoined, after registration, to ask for the surrender of the card, and if it is not forthcoming to report the fact to the Ministry of Food.

I am grateful for this opportunity of making a public statement on the subject, and I hope the action taken will remove all cause of complaint in the future.