HC Deb 23 January 1947 vol 432 cc78-9W
86. Major Bruce

asked the secretary of State for the Home Department the number of persons now undergoing detention in prison or in Borstal who are there as a result of sentences imposed by courts for absconding from approved schools, notwithstanding the fact that no crime was committed by them in the first instance.

Mr. Ede

The available figures relate to the year 1946. During this year 163 boys and 61 girls were committed to Borstal detention for absconding from Approved Schools. Figures showing how many of these persons were sent to Approved Schools as in need of care or protection and how many as a result of being charged with an offence are not immediately available, but I will send them to my hon. Friend as soon as they can be obtained.

87. Major Bruce

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he is aware that juveniles who are sent to an approved school as requiring care and attention are subsequently treated as though they were juvenile offenders; that if they run away from the school they are liable to be detained in prison, pending the hearing of their case by the magistrates, and their appeal, and that they may be sent to a Borstal institution without having committed any crime; and if he will take steps to remedy this.

Mr. Ede

Yes, Sir. I am aware both of the provisions of the existing law and of the great difficulty of making satisfactory provision for young people who are found by a Court to be in need of case and protection in their own interest, but prove unmanageable in an Approved School. The question of amending the existing law—particularly as regards the detention of young persons in prison—has been noted for consideration as soon as there is an opportunity of legislation.