HC Deb 04 December 1941 vol 376 cc1244-5
30. Mr. Rhys Davies

asked the Home Secretary whether, in view of the lack of accommodation in approved schools, he will circularise magistrates with a view to making more use of the probation system, especially where it is the delinquent's first offence?

Mr. H. Morrison

I would remind my hon. Friend that the memorandum on juvenile offences which was issued only last June by the then President of the Board of Education and myself included a paragraph in which justices were strongly advised to use probation in all suitable cases, apart from any question of first or previous offences. I hope that this recommendation may have the result desired by my hon. Friend.

Mr. Davies

Is the Home Secretary aware that nearly 30 per cent. of the juvenile delinquents are being sent to approved schools in some areas where there have been no previous offences of any kind?

Mr. Morrison

There are difficulties about this matter which the war has accentuated, but I have in this answer indicated my wishes, and I hope they will have the good results my hon. Friend wishes.

Mr. Lipson

Is my right hon. Friend aware that some courts are without probation officers because they have been called-up, and will he look into that matter?

Mr. Morrison

Yes, Sir.

Viscountess Astor

Will the right hon. Gentleman bear in mind that there is a number of older persons who can do this work?

Mr. Morrison

I will keep that point in mind.

Mr. Sorensen

Is the lack of accommodation being dealt with?

Mr. Morrison

Yes, Sir, as far as possible, but one has to face the fact that there are many demands upon building materials and labour.