Family Desertion


Publication Date: November 1913


Author(s): Oscar Leonard

Research Area: Law and ethics; Population and demographics; Social conditions

Keywords: Social Services; Poverty; Family; Law

Type: Other

Coverage: Missouri United States


The author describes the gravity of the problem of family desertion, especially the financial burden it places on society to support abandoned wives and children. The National Conference of Jewish Charities established a Desertion Bureau, which disseminates information and pictures in several Yiddish newspapers, a "Gallery of Missing Husbands," that has had some success in finding, apprehending, and returning husbands to families. Nevertheless, the author insists that there is an urgent need for more uniform legislation among states to deal with the issue. He urges Missouri to follow the examples of other states for dealing with desertion, including a program that pays families out of the wages of prison labor earned by husbands incarcerated for deserting those families.

In Bulletin of the National Conference of Jewish Charities 1913-1914, Baltimore, Vol.IV:4, ed. Lee F. Frankel.