(Continued from previous page)

Publication Date01 November 1946
AuthorN.A. Ralli
Date01 November 1946
DOI10.1177/026455054600500608
SubjectArticles
79
DEPARTMENTAL
COMMITTEE
ON
THE
ADMINISTRATION
OF
THE
DIVORCE
LAW
MEMORANDUM
submitted
by
N.A.P.O.
Hearing
of
Divorce
Cases.
We
have
carefully
considered
the
kind
of
Court
in
which
divorce
cases
shou,d
be
heard
in
the
future,
and
suggest
that
the
jurisdiction
for
divorce
suits
could
conveniently
be
extended
to
the
County
Court,
with
the
usual
facilities
for
hearing
of
appeals,
for
the
following
reasons:
(i)
Litigation
in
the
County
Court
is
cheaper.
(ii)
The
expenses
of
the
parties
and
witnesses
in
attending
such
Courts
’would
be
considerably
lessened.
(iii)
The
setting
up
of
conciliation
machinery
would
be
simplified.
(iv)
It
would
considerably
shorten
the
period
of
litigation.
We
think
it
desirable
to
have
specialists
in
this
work
sitting
as
Judges.
Therefore
we
would
favour
the
appointment
of
special
County
Court
(Divorce)
Judges.
They
should
sit
on
special
days
and
not
with
the
County
Court
Judge,
and
it
might
be
possible
to
appoint
one
County
Court
(Divorce)
Judge
to
cover
two
or
more
of
the
present
County
Court
circuits.
Reconciliation.
The
experience
of
the
Probation
Service
in
matrimonial
conciliation
throughout
the
country
indicates
that
the
proportion
of
divorce
cases
in
which
reconciliation
might
be
possible
would
justify
the
setting
up
of
machinery
for
the
purpose.
The
Probation
Service
readily
lends
itself
for
use
in
this
connection
through
its
organisation
into
combined
areas
and
large
boroughs,
etc.,
and
its
liaison
arrangements
for
the
Higher
Courts
could
be
easily
adapted
to
make
the
Service
available
to
the
County
Courts
if
they
were
to
deal
with
divorce
cases.
Conciliation
should
be
attempted
at
the
earliest
possible
moment
after
the
filing
of
a
petition.
Condonation.
The
present
doctrine
as
to
condonation
would
discourage
reconciliation
in
many
cases,
and
it
would
be
important
to
amend
the
present
position
so
that
a
reconciliation
which
subsequently
broke
down
within
a
specified
period,
say,
twelve
months,
should
not
prejudice
subsequent
proceedings
on
the
facts
which
were
the
original
subj ect
of
the
petition.
Custody
of
Children.
A
further
suggestion
is
that
in
the
event
of
the
question
arising
of
the
custody
of
the
children
in
any
particular
case,
the
Probation
Service
could
be
used
to
investigate,
on
behalf
of
the
Court,
the
suitability
of
the
parents
or
the
arrangements
which
they
could
offer.
(Continued
from
previous
page)
-
--
their
children,
or
to
see
that
they
are
cared
for.
In
such
cases
there
should
be
some
form
of
training
during
the
imprisonment,
and
some
form
of
after-care.
Notes:
(a)
Both
in
relation
to
the
proposed
treatment
by
probation,
and
the
after-care
following
approved
home
detention
or
imprisonment,
we
would
stress
the
need
for
minimising
the
number
of
persons
visiting
a
home.
(b)
We
find
that
the
custom
of
placing
the
child-
ren
only
of
convicted
parents
under
the
supervision
of
a
probation
ofhcer
is
unsatisfactory,
and
usually
embar-
rassing
for
the
probation
officer.
&dquo;~&dquo;~
j ~v
The
Report
of
the
~:~:«;hiIdr_en
Ca7~~~.
H.M.S.O.,
3s.
~-~...~~ _
The
supreme
importance
of
this
Report
is
that
it
will
probably
set
the
otficial
standard
of
child
care
for
many
years
to
come-a
considerable
part
of
it
is
occupied
with
criticisms
of
buildings
and
methods
which
have
been
in
vogue
for
the
last
30
years
or
more.
Child
care
is
a
subject
on
which
every one
feels
qualified
to
hold
forth
and
it
is
to
be
regretted
that
only
a
com-
paratively
small
number
of
people
will
read
the
Report
itself
while
most
will
rely
on
newspaper
extracts,
the
best
of
which
can
only
pick
out
a
few
of
the
more
striking
items.
It
therefore
behoves
all
social
workers
to
study
the
whole
carefully
so
that
they
may
instruct
public
opinion.
,The
Report
may
be
considered
from
two
angles-the
administrative
and
the
personal.
On
the
administrative
side
it
will
come
as
a
surprise
to
many,
in
spite
of
all
that
has
recently
been
written
on
this
subject,
to
realise
exactly
how
numerous
are
the
bodies
dealing
with
deprived
children
and
how
much
the
standards
of
these
bodies
may
vary.
And
surely,
surely,
we
ought
by
now
to
have
reached
a
stage
where
inter-departmental
jealousy
could
play
no
part
in
the
well-being
of
a
child.
If
the
various
childrens’
workers
owe
allegiance
to
bodies
which
are
historically
at
variance,
at
least
the
workers
themselves
might
have
shelved
these
archaic
ideas
and
concentrated
on
the
best
interests of
the
child.
On
the
personal
side
the
Report
shows
a
real
under-
standing
of
children
and
their
needs,
without
any
exaggeration
or
false
sentiment
and
if it
appears
to
lay
undue
emphasis
on
buildings
and
other
material
aspects,
we
must
not
forget
that
the
Committee
considered
the
question
of
staff
to
be
so
vital
that
it
issued
an
interim
report
on
the
need
for
their
proper
selection
and
training.
Indeed,
it
comes
as
rather
a
shock,
after
reading
so
much
about
individual
interest
and
the
personal
element
to
find
in
paragraph
474
a
recommendation
that
each
boarding
out
office
should
have
a
case
load
of
100-150
&dquo; on
the
basis
of
visiting
at
least
once
in
every
3
months ......
more
frequent
visits
would,
of
course,
be
necessary
where
there
was
any
cause
for
anxiety.&dquo;
The
visitor
is
also-
quite
rightly-to
keep
in
close
touch
with
each
child’s
school.
Let
every
case
worker
consider
what
sort
of
standard
of
work
would
flourish
under
these
figures..
This
is
not
the
place
to
consider
the
62
recommenda-
tions
in
detail
but
a
general
point
to
note
is
that
many
of
them
do
not
require
fresh
legislation
and
could
there-
fore
be
carried
into
effect
as
soon
as
the
various
authorities
concerned
can
be
persuaded
to
move
in
the
matter,
There
is
the
corresponding
advantage
that
these
improvements
could
be
altered
or
adapted
to
meet
varied
or
changing
conditions.
N. A. RALLI.
The
Problem
of
Punishment,
by
Leo
Page.
Published
by
the
Clarke
Hall
Fellowship;
price
6d.
This
is
the
third
pamphlet
by
Mr.
Page
on
a
subject
of
interest
to
Justices
and
probation
officers
alike.
While
it
is
possible
to
query
some
of
Mr.
Page’s
assertions,
the
essay
is,
on
the
whole,
reasonable
and
moderate
and
should
be
read
by
all
to
whom
the
principals
governing
the
disposal
of
cases
by
Counts
is
new
ground.

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