Majority Report:

The majority report ... represented the COS point of view, through with several modification. It recommended the abolition of the Guardians and the transference of the administration of the Poor Law (to be renamed Public Assistance) to the county and county borough councils. It recommended more specialised provision for old people, children and the able-bodied unemployed. Old people chould receive adequate outdoor relief, or if needing institutional care should be in small homes. Children should be boarded out or kept at home (e.g. by outdoor relief at a sufficient rate to a widowed mother); on the other hand school meals should be provided, where needen, by the Poor Law rather than by the education authority. Unemployment should be prevented by decasualisation, discouragement of blind-alley jobs, raising the school leaving age to 15, labour exchanges and the postponement of public works as much as possible to slack times. Relief of the unemployed should remain the responsibility of the Poor Law, but should be restorative and discriminating: for decent working men (if not helped by a voluntary aid committee) in industrial institutions (perhaps making use of disused workhouse) or in agricultural colonies, for loafers in detenttion colonies under the Home Office. Unemployment insurance and invalidity insurance (for early supernnuation) were recommended. Medical care should be provided through provident dispensaries; a 'gratuitous medical service' was rejected except for paupers. Disfranchisement should not apply to those who to those who received medical relief nor to anyone who was in receipt od other relief for less than three months in a year. In general, the reformed Poor Law of the Majority would abandon the ideas of deterence and 'less eligibility'; one of its main principles was that help should be 'preventive, curative and restorative'.

Difference between Majority and Minority report:
On two large points these proposal differed from those of the Minority Report ... The Majority favoured co-operation between charitable and voluntary bodies and the Poor Law. Medical relief was to be organised under local Medical Assistance Committees representing the Poor Law, the doctors, hospitals and friendly societies. For general purposes Voluntari Aid Committees were to be formed, reprisenting the Poor Law, charitable societies and trusts, the clergy, friendly societies; these were to handle most applications for outdoor relief, including cases referred by the Poor Law. They would have been, if they had ever come into being, the equivakent od DIstrict Committees od the COS on an official basis.

Secondly, the Majority Report retained the Poor Law, in fact though not in name, though it would have relieved it od much of its load. It did so chiefly because it testified, like the COS, to the importance of the family and the individual --- who, in the Minority's proposals, were in danger of being shuttled backwards and forwards between the several specialised servicies which it envisaged. The Majority also doubted whether authorities with quite different primary purposes could be entrusted with the care of those who had lost their economic independence.

M 160-162