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ST^ASAPIL BOARD OF GUARDIANS. COMPARATIVE PAUPERISM. FRIDAY, present,Messrs. Edwin Morgan (chair- man), John Williams (vice chairman), Joseph Roberts, Denbigh; John Lloyd (Lodge), Hen- Ilan; Rev. J. Adams, Tremeirchion; Mrs. Rawlins, Messrs. Robert Morris, W. Conwy Bell, Rhuddlan John Vaughan, Miss B. Evans, Abergele; Messrs. Thomas Ellis, Meliden; Thomas Morgan, Cwm; William Jones, Llan- nefydd; John Roberts, (Geinas), Bodfary; Jo- seph Lloyd, Cefn T. Howes Roberts, M ss Bennett, St. Asaph; Mrs. Mary Jones, Messrs. William Wynne, Rhyl Charles Grimsley (clerk). Mr. F. T. Bircham, Poor Law Inspec- tor for Wales and Monmouth was also in at- tendance. THE HOUSE. The number of paupers in the house last board was reported to be 133 admitted since, 6; discharged, 13; remaining in the house this day, sl27. Corresponding date of last year, 113; increase, 14. Vagrants relieved during the past fortnight, 87, a decrease of 37 on the number relieved during the corresponding per- iod of 1896. Gifts of papers for the use of the inmates were acknowledged from Mrs. Easterby, and Mr. Robert Jones, Probate Office. The Ladies Visiting Committee reported hav- ing visited the house, and finding everything, in order. A MAN DETERMINED TO BE AN INMATE. The Medical Officer's report book contained an entry to the effect that several able bodied men in the house would be tit for discharge in a few days The Clerk pointed out that a pauper named Williams, of Denbigh, was very reluctant to leave the house, and when discharged, found ways and means of getting in again. It tran- spired that the man was in the house then. He was ordered to leave before, and on that occasion he went to the Relieving Officer at Rhyl, and sought an order for the workhouse. The officer refused to give him one. Thereupon he went to 'aptain Keatinge, one of the over- seers of the poor in Rhyl, who gave him an order for the house. The master, when the pauper presented himself, consulted the clerk, and he bearing in mind what had transpired in the board, advised the master to refuse admis- sion on the order, and refer the man to the Relieving Officer. The Relieving Officer gave the pauper an order for the vagrants ward, and the man was taken in and discharged on the following Monday. Then he went to Denbigh, and saw the Relieving Officer there, who sent him down to the doctor. The doctor certified the man was suffering from hemorrhage, and thought an operation would be necessary and the Relieving Officer gave an orde.' to the man to go to the Infirmary. The house surgeon gave him something as a remedy, and in consequence of what he was told the Relieving Officer gave the man an order to go into the workhouse. The workhouse doctor reported that the man was suffering from a slight ailment now, but there were many men outside suffering more than what he did, and had to earn their living. It was decided to leave the matter of dis- charging the man to the doctor and the master. DENBIGH INFIRMARY AND THE DIAMOND JUBILEE. A letter was read from the chairman of the Denbigh Infirmary enclosing a resolution passed by the committee of that institution suggesting that an effort be made to wipe off the debt remaining- on the institution, as a method of celebrating the Queen's Jubilee. Mr. Joseph Lloyd asked if it was intended that they should take something from the rates for this object. The Chairman thought that that was what was meant. They did not say so in the letter, but he supposed it meant that they should in- crease their annual subscription for this year. The Clerk did not think so. He rather thought it was intended that the matter should be brought before the guardians in their indi- vidual capacity. Mr. Joseph Lloyd said there were 22 parishes in the union, and it would be a good thing for the guardians to bring the matter before their own parishes. No doubt the infirmary was of great benefit to all the parishes. Mr. Howes Roberts said that circulars had been sent to the chairmen of the different par- ish councils. Mr. Joseph Lloyd observed that it would be all right then. The parish councils would take the matter up. Mr. Wynne asked if they had power to in- crease their annual subscription. The Clerk said they had with the sanction of the Local Government Board. Mr. Wynne said he thought it would be a very proper thing for them to assist in the clearing of the debt on this excellent institu- tion, and he would propose tliac they increase their subscription this year to ten pounds or ten guineas. The Chairman remarked that the clerk thought the letter was addressed to them as in- dividuals. Mr. Wynne did not think so. It was ad- dressed to them as a board. Mr. Joseph Lloyd said it was not a right thing to propose that a portion of rates should be devoted to this purpose without notice on the agenda. Denbigh was already relieved of 9250 a year under the union chargeability, and they should not dip further into the rates to support the infirmary. Mr. Wynne gave notice that he would move the resolution at the next meeting. COMPARATIVE PAUPERISM. HEAVY OUT RELIEF IN THE UNION. Mr. Bircham said he desired to say a few words to them. He would have to report to the Local Government Board that there was a slight increase in pauperism in Wales and Mon- mouth. In North Wales, however, there was a slight decrease. In South Wales there was a depression in the tin plate industry. There was a slight decrease in agricultural Unions, but he did not see that the decrease affected St. Asaph union, the pauperism of which was four per cent of the population. Of course they took the pauperism on one particular day, but if they took the average of those who passed through the mill of pauperism say during six months it would be rather more. It would be 4-J per cent of the population He did not know that there was any particular reason why St. Asaph should stand in the 45th place of the 53 unions. There were only eight unions in the whole dis- trict with more paupers in than the St. Asaph union. He would give them a few figures. The total pauperism of Wales and Monmouth was 3.2 per cent of the population, that of St. Asaph union was 4 per cent. The total cost per head on the population for mainbenance in in-and-out relief for the whole of Wales was 3s. lld., for St Asaph, 4s. 8fd. In the whole of England and Wales the pauperism was 2.8 per cent of the population, and the cost of maintainance per head of population was 3s. 3J. In North Wales it was 3.8 per cent, and I the cost 4s. 9d, per head of the population. In the South, the rate was 3 per cent, and the cost 3s. 6d. But this rate per head Wj the whole amount spent in the pglia* not poor, but what vas simply t/he they gave for food find, el- • .uenance—what When they took into -othing for the poor. asylums, salai'iQS'V account the lunatics in P-ain.e to cqllgtw, workhouse loans., &c., it to Is. pflV .,erable more than that. It came foofl head of the population. So that for >- and clothing absolutely the poor got only 5s. out of 7s. The rest was for administration and lunatics. But that was not the total col- lected for poor rates. There were a great many things connected with the poor rates over which the guardians had no control, which came to another 5s. per head of population. That was interesting to them as they could tell People that out of 12s. they only spent 7s. ■But he had to say that when the cost of out- door relief in that union amounted to £ 8,000 a Year, it was a matter that demanded serious e-Olligideration. There was one suggestion he wv? L make, and that was the question tv. sufficient time and care was devoted to aese cases of application for relief. He was perfectly certain that a little more care and time taken in searching into what was really behind the scenes and what became of the doles they paid in out relief would show that there were a good many who ought not to get any at all, while some did not get adequate re- lief. He asked them to give careful considera- tion in this matter. He had been around many relieving officers' districts in North Wales, and they would be surprised as to how the money was spent. If guardians were made conversant with the manner in which the relief was spent they would be able to effect considerable revi sion. His suggestion to all Boar-is of Guardians was that relief districts be divided into small sections so that they should be able to go over them at. certain times every year, say twice a year, and not all on the same day For in- stance, it was utterly impossible to revise the Rhyl list in one morning. He should like a group of the rural cases and a few managabla Rhyl cases to be made to expire *on a certain day, and to be subjected to revision. He no- ticed tuey had a new relieving officer, and he thought they should be careful with him at the start, as he noticed that the information given in the book was not so perfect as it should be. They could not be too strict about that. If they did not mind trying the suggestions he had made, and make their relief at fixed per- iods, they would effect an alteration. They would find in cases where an old woman got two or three shillings a week, given by the guardians in kindness, as they thought, to keep her out of the workhouse, that the money was not spent as it should, not through any fault of the pauper, in keeping up a home for the old woman, but spent by people preying upon her from the outside. He thought the fact they had 1,390 )ut door paupers at a cost of £5,379 a year was sufficient justification for him to ask them to spend time in properly re- vising and inquiring into their list of perman en t paupers from time to time. He was sure they would take what he said as an intention of doing good, and not in a spirit of carping criti- cism (hear, hear). He had had 25 years experi- ence in this work, and was convinced that a great deal of saving could be effected in out- relief. Wales prided itself on the system of outrelief, or rather they were more partial to it than in England, and they should justify that policy by giving adequate relief to those deserving and stopping those who were a bad example (applause). The Chairman said they were much obliged to Mr; Bircham. They were always pleased to try to carry out his suggestions, and those he had made that day would have their considera- tion. Mr. Joseph Lloyd remarked that they had during the past 10 years, effected a reduction of £1,000 a year in the out relief and if Mr. Bircham visited them more frequent, they would be able to make still greater reductions (laughter). Mr. Bircham It is not a bad sign, when I do not visit you frequently (renewed laughter). The Vice-chairman said that after what they had heard from Mr. Bircham, he would give notice of motion, that he would at the next meeting, move that a special day be appointed to revise the lists of permanent paupers once or twice a year.

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DOLGELLEY.

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