§ 4.1 p.m.
§ Mr. Alexander W. Lyon
I have nearly reached my conclusion. I can say to my hon. Friend that, despite our reservations about extending the legislative scope of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, I think there is much more positive work to be done in encouraging 884 both the nationalised industries and employers to take on ex-offenders, particularly, as my hon. Friend says, immediately after their release from prison, although this has its dangers. All our evidence suggests that it is often justified if the ex-offender can be employed at that early stage.
I shall see whether the initiative can come from my Department. We will see what we can do in conjunction with the bodies my hon. Friend has named. I am grateful to him for raising the matter.
§ Question put and agreed to.
§ Adjourned accordingly at two minutes past Four o'clock.