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old, helpless, and infirm people in wholesome country homes, too. The House of Correction and the new Insane Asylum at Norristown have relieved Blockley of the great pressure that bore so hardly upon it. Now let the city set on foot plans for such a reorganization as will further subdivide that great overgrown institution, and reduce it to its proper various departments, each under the charge, if necessary, of officers of the city government, but visited by representatives of the Charity Organization Society, volunteers properly authenticated as persons of prudence and benevolence, who shall bring to the help of the officers and the relief of the inmates, thật spirit of kindliness and that zeal in doing good, in raising up the lowly and relieving the poor in spirit, which alone will do more to reduce the permanent pauper element of the city than any dole of money. The Hoụse of Correction is hardly a suitable asylum for the minors of both sexes who are gathered in with the motley crowds that seek shelter and refuge there. The fault of short terms and lax rules as to discharges without regard to improvement, is especially heightened in the case of the youthful offenders or unfortunates who are sent there, while there are many other existing institutions where they would be better cared for, with a reasonable prospect of an effectual reformation, and a fair opportunity for starting afresh in the field of honest work here or elsewhere. The good done by the House of Correction has of late been largely increased by making its able-bodied inmates work upon public improvements, and this suggests a further extension of the same kind of service to other public works both as a means of securing a better classification of the able-bodied and the helpless, and to the end that those whose reformation is still possible can be brought back to honest lives by suitably rewarding honest labor with honest wages. The question of economy in the management of penal and reformatory institutions is secondary in importance to the other tasks assigned them, and yet its answer is one of the readiest tests of the extent to which their work is efficiently done; so far as they are maintained exclusively, or in the main, out of public funds, it is one for which every tax payer may ask an answer. It is next to impossible now to give any precise information on the subject, yet, without it, there can be no definite comparison, either of methods or results. If the Charity Organization Society can set on foot a scheme that will secure uniform and satisfactory returns of the per capita cost of the inmates of Penal and Reformatory Institutions, it will lay the foundation for much future good work.
There is no longer any system of apprenticeship worthy of the name,—the question of securing good journeymen is now one that is every day becoming more and more difficult to solve. Penal and Reformatory Institutions might make their inmates masters of trades to such an extent as to protect them against a return to vice and a descent to crime. To the infinite honor of the workingmen, the statement is made by our authorities and experts in prisons, that an almost infinitesimal proportion of the inmates of the penitentiaries have learned any trade. The kind of employment in vogue at Penal and Reformatory establishments is very much limited by the necessity of making the work there such as can be profitable under the contract system. It would certainly be cheaper in the end to leave out of consideration the money thus earned toward the support of the inmates, if they could be fitted to earn their own livelihood on their discharge, and thus relieve the community from the necessity of providing for their support at regularly recurring periods. Almost all of these topics have been discussed by those best authorized to speak on such subjects, but thus far few of the Reformatory Institutions here have been enabled to apply to their practical working the experience of kindred establishments elsewhere. The best service that can be rendered the public, as tax-payers and as good citizens, bent on removing public burthens and relieving individual distress, is to secure the actual practical test of some of the remedies suggested, to note their workings and to report their result. It must be borne in mind that the distinguishing mark of all our best institutions, charitable and reformatory, is that they owe their existence largely, if not entirely, to individual exertion and to the energy of private associations. It is only after demonstrating the necessity and proving the success of these institutions, that they receive the benefit of state and · municipal appropriations, and have become the recipients, or rather the agents, for distributing a portion of the revenue gathered from the tax-payers. The benefit of services rendered the community, in caring for helpless and vicious children and reforming them, that they may become self-supporting, is equally measurable. In other communities it has been shown that reform schools have worked an actual diminution in the criminal classes, that every dollar spent in
preventing crime was largely returned in the saving thus effected, and that the cheapest and best schools were those that made good citizens of the classes from which professional pauperism and crime had drawn their largest body of recruits. In the midst of the great prosperity of this city and of the state, too little care has been taken to gather the statistics of this kind and to note from time to time the effects of improved education, of larger facilities for learning a trade, and of the increase in the number of employments, as a means of saving the community from the results of neglecting to provide the decay in apprenticeship as it used to exist. It is a proper field of work for a Charity Organization Society, and one that may well employ its members and secure it new volunteers in the work that it has undertaken. Under our system of political administration, the officers of government, national, state and local, have little leisure or inclination to study questions about penal and reformatory institutions, or to apply their official knowledge, as almoners of state and city funds, to the needs of the institutions receiving them. The example of a recent official visit of the Governor of the State and the Mayor of the city to each of the Penal and Reformatory Institutions of the city was in the highest degree novel and wholesome. Both Governor Hoyt and Mayor Stokley have shown a lively and intelligent interest in the questions of just such reforms as are here broached. In England a minister of state, the Secretary for Home Affairs, took the initiative in an effort to determine how far corporal punishment could be substituted for imprisónment and fine of juvenile offenders. The whole community was kept alive to the interest and importance of the subject by a discussion opened in the leading journals, in which magistrates, Reformatory officers and men and women of all classes, took part. If it did no other good, it showed how largely the public mind abroad has been educated to consider the question of the reform of juvenile offenders as one lying very close to the solution of all penal and reformatory problems. In New York a legislative committee is now investigating the working of the reformatory and charitable institutions receiving state and city aid for their support. The result of their labors will undoubtedly throw much light on the vexed questions of how far these are managed in the real interests of the community and cf their wards, the poor, the helpless, the abandoned and the vicious and neglected children, and how to put into actual operation the reforms suggested by the rules of good charity organization. Here, with a great and growing population, there is less scope for such an investigation, for the existing system of individual homes and individual ownership of them has done much to relieve this community from the evils that are incidental to the crowded tenement houses and the absence of homes and home influences. Here the Building Associations have been the real safeguard for many families, their earnings have all gone towards procuring a home, and this has secured industry, sobriety, temperance and good habits, thus making the road easy for improvement in morals and in both physical and social condition. There are still sections of the city and classes of the community where these inducements are unknown, and from them come the recruits to the army of paupers and criminals that supply our penal and reformatory institutions with their floating population. It is to get at these that the Charity Or. ganization Society is called on to consider the questions of the reforms that are needed and the best methods of securing their adoption. From its daily experience, gathered in the ward organizations, where good and bad, helpless and unfortunate, are all coming for help, many lessons may be gathered that will be of use. In every case where investigation is made, it would be well to ascertain the antecedents of the applicants, what education they had, what were their surroundings as children, how far the children of their own fanıily are being fitted to support themselves, what kind of educa-, tion they are receiving, how much they are likely to improve their condition by knowing a trade or handicraft, and what good orphanages and reform schools have done those of them who have been in them.
RECOMMENDATONS. The main points on which practical work can be done by the Charity Organization Society in a way to co-operate with existing institutions, and utilize the good done by the active laborers in the broad and ever widening field of organized charity, are these :
Ist. In order to make a thorough-going and comprehensive scheme, it is necessary to obtain a complete census of the charitable institutions in and near the city, showing their capacity and how far their number is under or over it.
2nd. With such an enumeration there should be coupled a systematic statement of the average cost per capita of each of our charities, as a means of determining how far the means can be obtained to provide for those who are yet to be brought within them.
3rd. There should be set on foot a system of inspection of all existing charities and for this end a body, such as the State Board of Charities, should be authorized to make returns showing the comparative cost and results of the work done by them.
4th. The co-operation of residents near every existing charity, particularly those in the country, should be secured by the extension of local branches of the Charity Organization Society.
5th. There should be engrafted on every existing penal and reformatory institution, a system of classification which shall keep minors apart from adult criminals, first offenders from those who have been recommitted once or oftener.
6th. To this end there ought to be established an intermediate prison for the reception and care of minors charged with and convicted of crime, now too often ruined by being associated with adult professional criminals.
7th. There should be some reform in the matter of recommitments. Those who are sentenced for the first time should be protected from those who have been retuned to confinement for a repetition of offences. Those who go back for a second or third time ought to be put under a much severer discipline than the offender who is under restraint for the first time. The newcomers should not be ruined by the lessons of those who are older in crime.
8th. Every effort should be made to bring home to the taxpayer, the authorities of the State and city, the benevolent, all interested in reformatory institutions, the advantage, thoroughly tested by experience here and elsewhere, of establishing them in the country, where room can be got to introduce the system of family homes in households numbering not more than twenty inmates, with whom kindly influences can be made to work in a way that is clearly impossible in the congregate system, with its necessarily rigid discipline and uniform rules for all classes, without regard to temperament or other conditions or characteristics of the individual cases.
9th. When this is done, measures ought to be taken to bring home to those in authority, those who have the power to commit and discharge, the necessity of protecting the community by guarding children once entrusted to reformatory institutions from evil