HC Deb 01 November 1937 vol 328 c549
73. Mr. Messer

asked the Home Secretary how many people have been sent to prison for non-payment of rates during the last 12 months up to the most convenient date?

Mr. Lloyd

The latest available figures are those for 1936. Subject to final check, the number during that year was 1,424, comprising 1,323 men and 101 women. I am glad to say that this shows a substantial reduction as compared with 1935, when the number was 2,108, comprising 1,968 men and 140 women.

Mr. Messer

Can the Under-Secretary say whether the 1936 Act operates in these cases?

Mr. Lloyd

Yes, Sir. The Money Payments Act has been the cause of the diminution of the figures.

Mr. Gibson

Can the hon. Member say how long these persons were detained?

Major Dower

Does the Under-Secretary consider that there is a reasonable time allowance before putting the law into operation?

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