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His Royal Highness the Duke of Joseph Fox, esq.
William Hale, esq.
W. H. Hoare, esq.
Christ. Idle, esq.
Z. Macaulay, esq.
Sam. Mills, esq.
John Mortlock, esq.
Thos. Pellatt, esq.
Thos. Pemberton, esq.
Rich. Phillips, esq.
Wm. Phillips, esq.
Joseph Reyner, esq.
T. Rowcroft, esq.
J. D. Thomson, esq.
Henry Thornton, esq. M P.
J. Weyland, jun. esq.
W. Wilberforce, esq. M.P.
First. Under these impressions, the association most anxiously recommends, as a measure of primary importance, the forming of local associations for the relief of the poor in the ma
nufacturing towns and districts in which they have not already been instituted. In most of our great manufacturing towns such institutions have probably been already formed: but when once it becomes generally known that an association has been set on foot in the metropolis for the purpose of aiding the endeavours of any local plans of a similar nature, such local associations will probably take place in districts, in which, without the hope of some more effectual means of relief than they possess within themselves, the attempt might be deemed impracticable.
Great are the advantages which may be expected to result from establishing a friendly correspondence and connection between the general and local associations. It is evident, indeed, that without such co-operation the London association, however liberally supported, could administer but a very limited measure of relief to the necessities which have called forth its exertions.
It is not however merely by augmenting the funds of the local institutions that the general association may be of use to them. It may be highly serviceable, by communicating to then useful information and suggestions ;-while every distressed manufacturing district will know that such an association has been formed, to which it may state its sufferings, and which will at least endeavour to lessen their amount.
Again- While the institution formed in the metropolis will become the general depositary for the subscriptions of all those, however widely dispersed in point of residence, who may wish to contribute towards the relief of their suffering countrymen, the local associations will be best qualified to relieve the local distresses of their several districts, not merely from being better acquainted with their varying tastes and habits, but also because, from knowing the characters and conduct of families and individuals, they will be able to direct their chief attention to the more industrious and deserving members of the community.
But the advantages, however great and numerous, which are likely to result from the formation of local associations, are at the same time so obvious as not to require a detailed enumeration. The committee therefore will only add, that while they earnestly solicit the public encouragement and support of this institution, they are scarcely less anxious to impress the necessity of establishing local institutions for supplying the local wants of the manufacturing poor.
Secondly. An increase of the quantity of our national stock
of subsistence, and increased frugality in the consumption of it, are, on all grounds, the most ciiectual expedients which can be resorted to for relieving the public necessities. Under this persuasion, it will be one of the committee's first and principal endeavours to angment, if possible, the amount of national provisions, by the inportation of rice and any other at. tainable articles of subsistence. More especially, it appears to the committee, that by availing themselves of the resources afforded by our domestic fiskie ies, the quantity of palatable and nutritious food way be increased. On this head, indeed, the committee have the satisfaction of being able to state, that measures have been already taken for seciring, for the use of the manufacturing poor in the metropolis, a considerable quactity of excellent fishi, which, from the fear of not finding a sale, would not otherwise be brought to any market.
Economy in using the means of subsistence which we at present possess is an object of such supreme importance, that the commit:ee cannot too strongly recommend to all persolis of authority and influence to consider and adopt the most ellectual methods for promoting it. Miore particularly, they for it their duty, to suggest, that the most essential benefiis would result from a voluntary agreement in the higher and more afluent classes of the community to lessen to the utinost their consumption of any articles which constitute the subsistence of the lower orders of the people. In some of the distressed districts, barley, and still more generally oats, are the ordinary food of the bulk of the population ; and, by limiting as much as possible the consumption of the latter article hy horses, an immense amount of provisions might be preservel for the use of man. This proposal of a voluntary agreement is no new idea. An association of a similar nature, it will be remembered, was generally entered into during the last scarcity; and besides the indication which it afforded that the higher classes sympathized with the distresses of the lower, it produced no mean augmentation of the general stock of subsist
The committee confine their proposal to the opulent only, but they are satisfied that its effects would be eventually extended to every branch of the community.
Thirdly. It cannot be necessary for the committee to enter minutely into particulars as to the best methods of assisting the distressed. Under the varying circumstances of different di. stricts, different modes may be most adviseable. Much, of course, must here be left to the intelligence and prudence of the local associations : for instance In some districts it has been
stated, that the poor are in want of potatoes for seed; in others, tlfat having pawned their wearing apparel for much less than its real valne, they would be greatly benefited, at a moderate expense, by being enabled to redeem it. In some cases, it may be most advisable to purchase necessary articles by wholesale, and to retail them at reduced rates. But the committee, in throwing out this last suggestion, feel it their duty to add, that it should scarcely ever be adopted, unless in the case of articles which are not of primary necessity, or of which there is an ample, or rather a superabundant, supply. Nor can the committee here forbear from warning the benevolent against all modes of administering relief which will occasion an unrestrained consumption of any articles which constitute the staple of the national subsistence. This is a warning which considerations of humanity, no less than of policy, powerfully enforce. By acting on the opposite principle, the most fatal consequences might ensue.
In pursuance of the above benevolent plan, the committee has been employed in establishing a correspondence throughout the kingdom; and in order to encourage the formation of local institutions, a detail of the proceedings of the Spitalfields Soup Society, as described in the last number of The Philanthropist, has been printed for general circulation, together with the following hints, which will be found extremely useful to those who may be willing to devote some time to the organising and conducting of such laudable and patriotic institutions.
1. In any given district where distress prevails, all persons, without regard to religious distinctions, who are capable of assisting, should be called upon and invited to form part of the general committee for a local establishment, and with a view to the division of labour it is of great consequence that this committee be as large as possible.
2. The general committee should appoint subcommittees to solicit contributions personally from all who can afford to subscribe.
3. The general committee should divide the district into departments, and place every department under the care of a subcommittee, which subcommittee need not consist of more than two members.
4. Each subcommittee should arrange its inquiries under certain heads, and be furnished with printed papers, with blanks, to be filled up, on a plan similar to the following:
Number Weekly Parochial State of Cleanliness'How many
in Earnings. Relief. Clothing. and Adults and Bible. Res Family.
apparent Children Character, can read.
The subcommittee should mark in their lists those cases which require continued attention, and such cases should be entered in a ledger with an alphabetical index, and be reported on from time to time. The ledger might be ruled in the same manner as the printed lists, a suflicient space being left between each case for subsequent remarks. The printed forms which have been filled up by the subcommittees should be delivered in to the general committee. These lists should be regularly paged, and formed into a book, and the names entered in an alphabetical index. By this means an easy reference may be had to the case of every family which has been visited. As the subcommittees thus give up their lists to the general committee, they should be furnished with books for those cases which require continued attention ; and as far as respects these, it will be sufficient for the subcommittees to report the name and resi. dence of the persons relieved, with the amount and nature of the relief, in order that it may be regularly posted into the ledger.
5. New cases of distress, and those which may have escaped the notice of any subcommittee, should be brought before the general committee, and referred for examination to the subcommittee of the department in which such case is situated.
6. That as all attempts to relieve the poor in a time of scar. city, by enabling them to purchase bread flour, or meal, at reduced prices, have a direct tendency to increase the scarcity, it is strongly recommended that the attention of committees be principally directed to such nourishing substitutes as rice, pease, also dried and fresh fish, where the latter can be procured, and that shops for the sale of these articles, at reduced prices, to persons who bring tickets from the visiting committees, bé established, under the control and superintendance of the general committee.
7. That a small tract or paper be circulated by the subcommittees among the families of the industrious poor, pointing out tbe method by which they may form wholesome and pa