HC Deb 14 August 1916 vol 85 cc1444-5W

asked the President of the Local Government Board whether he is aware that the Steyning Guardians have been detaining in the workhouse for several months a married woman, who is able to earn her own living and is desirous of being discharged, because her husband is an inmate of the workhouse infirmary, and that the married woman complained to the Local Government Board of her detention and received the reply that the question of her detention was in the discretion of the guardians; if he will say whether before the letter was written the Local Government Board had consulted their legal adviser; and, if not, will the Local Government Board consult him?


There has been some misunderstanding with regard to this case which I am taking steps to correct. Where any member of a family requires relief on account of sickness, accident, or bodily or mental infirmity, the form of relief is with- in the discretion of the guardians, but I am advised that, except perhaps in some exceptional cases, the guardians are not empowered to prevent a woman taking her discharge from the workhouse without her husband or even, as in this case, against his wish.

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