HC Deb 12 March 1941 vol 369 c1278
39. Mr. Lipson

asked the Minister of Health the number of vagrants in casual wards for the last recorded date?

Miss Horsbrugh

The number of casuals in receipt of relief in casual wards in England and Wales on the night of the last Friday in December was 3,488. The returns from five authorities for the last Friday in January are still outstanding, but, taking the December figures for the five authorities, the total for January is 3,199.

Mr. Lipson

Will the Minister consult with the Minister of Labour with a view to finding out what can be done to get these vagrants to assist the national war effort?

Miss Horsbrugh

Yes, Sir, but my hon. Friend will be aware that the number of vagrants is greatly reduced from pre-war times, when, instead of being from 3,000 to 4,000, it was between 7,000 and 11,000.