§ MR. J. E. JOHNSON-FERGUSON
asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department, Whether his attention has been drawn to a prosecution by the Atherton Local Board before the Leigh, Lancashire, Bench of Magistrates, under the Public Health Act, 1875 (38 and 39 Vic. c. 55), section 126, for the removal in a public conveyance of the dead body of a child who died from an infectious disorder, without previously notifying to the owner or driver that it had died from such a disorder; that the magistrates decided that the offence was not one within the meaning of the Act; that their decision has since been approved in The Justice of the Peace of January 30th 1886, in the following terms:—Sub-section 2 imposes a penalty on any person who exposes another person in his charge, while the latter is suffering from infectious disease. But a dead body is not a person so suffering. We were at first inclined to think that sub-section 3 might meet the case. But we are of opinion that a dead body is not a tiling ejusdem generis with bedding, clothing, or rags. The case appears to disclose an omission in the Act;and, whether he will take steps to have the Act amended?
§ THE PRESIDENT (Mr. JOSEPH CHAMBERLAIN)
said, his attention had been called to the prosecution in question, and he had no doubt whatever that the decision of the magistrates was right, and that the word "person" in the Act did not include a dead body, and that a dead body was not a thing ejusdem generis with "bedding, clothing, or rags." Under these circumstances, it was evident that there had been an omission in the Act; and if the Act came up for amendment that point would be noticed.