News Release Archive


A new book chronicling the administration of the Nova Scotia Poor
Law, which has formed the basis for the province's approach to
social assistance, was officially launched in Halifax today.

"Poverty, Poor Houses and Private Philanthropy" covers 1749 to
the present, and contains numerous pages of interesting and
dramatic material on the poor law, poor houses and county asylums
that were central to law administration.

The book documents the role of the voluntary and private sector
agencies which, from the beginning, worked together to enhance
and improve the system.

The book was a project of the Senior Citizens' Secretariat from
1991 to 1996. A copy of the book was presented to Housing and
Municipal Affairs Minister Jim Smith at today's reception at
Province House.

Members of the committee which undertook the project, including
the research and  writing, became known as the "Senior Scribes".
They include Darrell Mills, Shirley Elliott, Doris Evans, Douglas
Fraser, Daniel H. Johnson, Murray Knowles, Joan Lay, John
LeBlanc, John A. MacKenzie, Dr. Fred MacKinnon, Dan MacLean, Max
MacLeod, Harold Shea, Dr. Chester Stewart, Brian Vandervaart and
Richard Wagner.

"I applaud the committee members for their initiative and
dedication in producing this book which will become an important
historical document in the evolution of social assistance in Nova
Scotia," said Dr. Smith.

In his preface to the book, Dr. Fred MacKinnon wrote: "There are
lessons to be learned from the information we have gathered. The
most significant and fundamental lesson relates to the very
essence and nature of public assistance for the needy..."

A financial grant from the New Horizons Program, Health Canada
assisted in making the book a reality. It is available for sale
at the Senior Citizens' Secretariat by calling 902-424-0065 or
1-800-670-0065, and the Nova Scotia Government Bookstore at
902-424-7580, or 1-800-526-6575.


Contact: Brian Vandervaart  902-424-6322

trp                 Oct. 02, 1996 - 3 p.m.