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The Report of the Lunacy Law Committee of the House of Commons, 1878

Extract

Our readers are already fully acquainted with the evidence given before this Committee (See Jan. No., 1878, Vol. xxiii., p. 457). Its report has now been issued, and as it is very short, we reprint it in extenso. Its purport is mild, and, on the whole, those engaged in the administration of the Lunacy Laws of the kingdom, the physicians to asylums, and the British public have reason to be satisfied. The recommendations of the Committee closely coincide with the points on which, in the article referred to (p. 520), we stated there had been a fairly good case made out for alterations in the law. of the 22 recommendations made by this Committee, 17 were advocated by us. In our opinion the chief omission in the report is a recommendation that the whole mode of administering the property of the insane in England should be reformed. We showed most conclusively, from the evidence of those persons best acquainted with its working, that the English law is, in this respect, cumbrous, inefficient, and unjust. The deficiencies of the Irish and Scotch Lunacy Laws, and their administration, pointed out by us, are ignored by the Committee. The subject of Criminal Lunacy, and the clear call that has been made out for a revision of the existing statutes in regard to it, has also been left unnoticed.

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The British Journal of Psychiatry
  • ISSN: -
  • EISSN: 2514-9946
  • URL: /core/journals/the-british-journal-of-psychiatry
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The Report of the Lunacy Law Committee of the House of Commons, 1878

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