It may be within the knowledge of some of your Lordships that I moved for an inquiry last Session as to the various methods adopted for the relief of the sick poor, both by means of charity and by means of payments 1235 from the rates. The noble Viscount, then, in the course of a very sympathetic reply, admitted that there was some reason for such an inquiry being instituted, and suggested that he should be allowed some time to consider the matter and see what was the best method of inquiry to be undertaken. I then withdrew the Motion. Some time has now elapsed, and I now beg to ask the noble Viscount whether Her Majesty's Government will agree to an inquiry by a Select Committee with regard to all hospitals, provident and other public dispensaries, and charitable institutions within the Metropolitan area for the care or treatment of the sick poor, which possess real property or invested personal property in the nature of endowment of a permanent or temporary nature, the Committee to receive, if they think fit, evidence tendered by the authorities of voluntary institutions for like purposes, or, with their consent, in relation to such institutions; and further to inquire and report what amount of accommodation for the sick is provided by rate, and the management thereof?
THE LORD PRESIDENT OF THE COUNCIL (Viscount CHANBROOK)
In answer to the noble Lord I should state that, in accordance with my promise, I consulted my Colleagues upon this subject, and I may inform him that the proposal which he has put on the Paper is one which we should heartily assent to. If, therefore, the noble Lord will move at any time that may be convenient to him for a Committee on this subject I can only say that he will receive the hearty support of the Government.
That is a very satisfactory reply on the part of the noble Viscount, and I beg, therefore, to give notice that upon an early day I will move for the appointment of a Committee, and for the appointment on that Committee of such noble Lords as may be willing to serve upon it.
§ House adjourned at a quarter before Five o'clock, till To-morrow, a quarter past Ten o'clock.