HC Deb 02 June 1942 vol 380 cc547-8W
Mr. Oliver

asked the Home Secretary how many probation officers are carrying a case load of over 60 cases, the number laid down as sufficient by the Departmental Committee on Social Services Report?

Mr. H. Morrison

The standard of 60 cases suggested by the Social Services Committee was qualified by the nature of the duties other than supervision falling to a probation officer and the size of his area. Any judgment based on numbers alone would be misleading. At present about 270 probation officers are believed to have more than 60 cases under supervision. It must be borne in mind that under war conditions case loads are bound to be higher than normal, but even allowing for these conditions the necessity of adequate staffing does not seem to be fully realised in all areas. In the joint memorandum on juvenile offences issued by the Home Office and Board of Education last June justices were particularly asked to satisfy themselves that their probation officers are not overburdened, and this representation is being followed up by the Home Office in connection with the visits of inspectors.

Mr. Oliver

asked the Home Secretary how many probation officers have been called up; how many have resigned or transferred to other work; and the number of this total which have been replaced?

Mr. Morrison

Since the beginning of the war 71 full-time probation officers have been called up. Their places have been mostly filled by temporary appointments, but in some instances a substitute has not been found necessary. During the same period 57 probation officers have left the service, having reached in most cases the age of retirement. These posts have been filled and in addition 64 new full-time appointments have been made, so that the total number of full-time probation officers is now 578, as compared with 514 in 1939