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Deaf.- In institutions, 457.
Not included in the above enumeration are 132 sane inmates of the Massachusetts Hospital for Epileptics and 242 inmates of the Massachusetts Hospital for Dipsomaniacs and Inebriates.
L. C. STORRS, STATE CORRESPONDING SECRETARY.
The Michigan legislature meets biennially. The session of 1901 was the last, and the report of Michigan to the twenty-eighth National Conference of Charities covered the legislation which was being attempted by that legislature, which was then in session, namely: for state care of dependent children who are defective; for the establishment of a bureau of information regarding criminals; for amending the constitution, so that an indeterminate sentence law might be enacted; to amend the law governing the appointment of county agents; for extending the maximum age of children for admission to the State Public School; for establishing a reformatory prison for women; for establishing an additional asylum for the insane. The only one of the above-named measures which was enacted into law was that providing for the amendment of the constitution, so that an indeterminate sentence law might be enacted, which has yet to be submitted to the people for ratification. The others will be attempted again in the legislature of 1903. A law providing for the separate trial of juvenile offenders was passed.
The D'Arcambal Home for Discharged Prisoners, which for years has done most helpful work for a large number of discharged prisoners, has entered upon the work of broadening its efforts on the lines of a Prison Association.
The twentieth annual meeting of the Michigan State Conference of Charities and Corrections was held at Ionia in December, 1901. The proceedings were both interesting and profitable, and the exhibits of the products of the industrial departments of Michigan's institutions for juvenile delinquent and defective were a revelation to the interested but ignorant beholders.
A. GROUP OF DELINQUENTS. 1. Criminals.- Michigan has three prisons,— the state prison at Jackson, the State Reformatory at Ionia, and the Upper Peninsula Prison at Marquette. In these is an aggregate of 1,345 prisoners. Three grades are required in each of the prisons. The parole law is in operation in the State with excellent results.
2. Vicious.— By which term it is supposed are meant “drunks,” “disorderlies,” “ vags,” etc. These, as a rule, serve short but frequent sentences in our county jails, in which they make from 17 to 87 per cent. of the total number, according to the size of the county and the industry of the officers. The total commitments for the year were 15,444; the average number in jail was 624.13 ; and the average duration of imprisonment was 14.31 days.
3. Insubordinates.— If by this term is meant “juvenile offenders ” the following is the report. The state has an Industrial School for Boys at Lansing and an Industrial Home for Girls at Adrian. To the first, boys between the ages of ten and sixteen years may be committed, to be held until seventeen years of age. The Board of Control, however, has authority to place boys out in families while still under its control, or, wherever in its discretion deemed wise, to discharge a boy. 675 boys were in the school at last report. To the Industrial Home for Girls, girls between the ages of ten and seventeen years may be committed, to remain until they are twentyone years of age. The Board of Control is authorized to reduce the term of sentence, or it may place girls in families while still held under the control of the institution. There were 357 girls in the home at last report.
GROUP OF DESTITUTES. 1. In Poorhouses.- Total number in the poorhouse of Michigan 6,563. Average number, 2,751 at date of last report. These figures have varied very little for the past five years.
2. Destitute Children.- Michigan has her State Public School for Dependent Children. To this are sent all children of sound body
and mind, who become dependent on the several counties for support, who are between the ages of two months and twelve years, so that in no poorhouse in the state are to be found any such children. The last report shows that since the school opened in 1874, 4,807 children had been received and placed in homes, by indenture or adoption, except 167 who have died, 611 who have had to be returned to counties as ineligible, and 155 in the school. Besides this state institution there are reported in church and private institutions 876 children.
Sick and Injured. Have no data regarding such.
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C. GROUP OF DEFECTIVES. Blind.— Michigan has a School for the Blind. The attendance varies between ninety-five and one hundred pupils, which is very little below the total number of blind children of school age in the state, There may be admitted to this school, free of charge for tuition or maintenance, any resident of the state, between the ages of seven and nineteen years, whose defective sight prevents his receiving instruction in the common schools. Instruction is given from the lowest through the high-school grades. Industrial training is required which shall fit both the boys and girls for future useful lives. Physical development is secured under trained teachers, in the use of dumb bells, Indian clubs, etc.
Deaf-mutes.- This unfortunate class was the one first cared for by the state. The Michigan School for the Deaf will soon celebrate its semi-centennial. The school has an attendance of 425 pupils, which is about all the deaf of school age. There may be received at the school deaf persons and partially deaf persons between the ages of seven and twenty-one years residents of the state, without charge for tuition or maintenance. Classes from the primary to the high-school grades are here maintained. Every child is taught lip reading and articulation, and the pupils can hardly be called “mutes.” The industrial training includes cooking, millinery, sew. ing, dressmaking, wood-carving, wood-turning, cabinet-making, shoemaking, harness-making, tailoring, and house decoration. A large majority of the pupils go out from the school to remunerative positions.
Feeble-minded. - Michigan's Home for Feeble-minded and Epilep
tic is its baby. The institution was opened in 1895, and has attained the size of 400 inmates, the number about equally divided between the two classes. While under one general management, the two classes are cared for separately in cottages quite distant from each other, and the Home is practically two institutions. Six hundred applications are on file for admission, which cannot be cared for because of lack of room. But the institution is comparatively a recent one, and, while not very popular, receives the attention of each successive legislature in some small degree, each granting additional accommodations. Whether Michigan's accommodations will ever overtake the demand is problematical,
Insane.— The insane are cared for in Michigan in state asylums, one county asylum, and two private asylums. There are five state asylums, one of which is for the criminal and dangerous insane, There were confined in these, Dec. 31, 1901, an aggregate of 4,345 patients. In the Wayne County Asylum (in which county Detroit is situated) there were at the same date 446 ; and, in the two private asylums (one Roman Catholic), 312. This county asylum is under strict state supervision, and compares most favorably with the state institutions. The maintenance of patients is paid for by the county from which they are sent for one year, after which they become state charges. Certain of the patients are state charges from the first. Provision was made by the last legislature for five hundred additional patients, which will relieve for a short time the crowded condition of the asylums and give room for applicants who are waiting admission.
W. ALMONT GATES, ST. PAUL, STATE CORRESPONDING SECRETARY.
There has been no regular session of the state legislature of this state since last report. An extra session was called to consider tax legislation; and the only act passed pertaining to the general subject of charities was one to classify the School for the Deaf and the School for the Blind as educational institutions, and not charitable. The act did not in any way affect the management of those schools.
The Board of Control of State Institutions created by the legislature of 1901 assumed control of all the charitable and correctional institutions of the state on August 1. There have been few changes
in the official force of the institutions. All the former superintendents have remained, and their powers under the new law have been increased. The changes made in minor places have been for good causes other than political.
The constitutionality of the Board of Control law as applicable to the state educational institutions was called in question by the Normal School Board; and the Supreme Court has filed its decision holding the law to be constitutional, and the normal schools under the financial management of the Board of Control. While under the terms of the law the Board of Control has the financial management of the educational institutions, yet the board of regents of the State University, the board of directors of the State Normal Schools,
ools, the board of directors of the School for the Deaf and the School for the Blind, and the Board of Control of the State Public School for Dependent Children are retained, each with power to regulate the course of study of its respective institution, and employ and dismiss instructors, teachers, and other employees. These boards have charge of the educational work; and the Board of Control purchases all supplies, constructs all new buildings, and fixes the salaries of employees. In the actual operation of this law it has been difficult to find a clear line of cleavage, satisfactory to all, between the powers and duties of the Board of Control and the powers and duties of the old board, with whom the management is divided.
In regard to the detention hospitals established under the law of 1901, and which was reported in the report from this state one year ago (page 69, Proceedings 1901), there might be some misunderstanding from the language used; and I am asked by my predecessor to make a correction. The state does not construct and maintain the detention hospitals. The Board of Control have arranged with an existing hospital in each of the three larger counties of the state to accept and care for patients whose insanity upon examination in the probate court may be in doubt, and who may for that reason be committed to the detention hospital until their insanity may be determined, but in no event longer than six weeks. These hospitals are paid by the Board of Control from state funds for the care and maintenance of such persons.
The separate training school for girls has not yet been established, owing to the fact that the city of Red Wing has commenced an action in court to prevent the location of such institution in any other place than that city.