In Belgium the institutions for the repression of vagrancy are maintained by the state under a law of November 27th, 1891.
C. 5, which was re-enacted by the Vagrancy Act 1824.
The causes for a divorce are adultery, incompetency, conviction of a felony and sentence to imprisonment therefor after marriage, conviction of a felony or infamous crime before marriage provided it was unknown to the other party, habitual drunkenness, extreme cruelty, intolerable indignities, neglect of the husband to provide the common necessaries of life, vagrancy of the husband and pregnancy of the wife before marriage by another man than her husband and without his knowledge.
Vaison, under the name of Vasio, was one of the principal towns of the Vocontii, and was a place of great importance under These European labour colonies are described in detail in the appendices to the Report and Evidence of the Vagrancy Committee and in the books mentioned at the end of this article, but a résumé of the more important colonies may here be given.
The principal grounds for divorce are impotence, bigamy, adultery, conviction of felony or other infamous crime subsequent to the marriage or before the marriage if unknown to the other party, desertion or habitual drunkenness for one year, such cruel or barbarous treatment as to endanger the life of the other, such conduct as to render the condition of the other intolerable, and vagrancy of the husband; but before applying for a divorce the plaintiff must reside in the state for one year immediately preceding, unless the cause of action was given within the state or while the plaintiff was a resident of the state.
Penalty for vagrancy rose over the years from time served in stocks, to whipping, to branding, and then to death.
The net yearly cost of support and relief from 1884 to 1904 averaged $2,136,653, exclusive of vagrancy cases (average $31,714).
Eighty-three per cent of the annual convictions, summarily and on indictment, followed by committal to gaol, are for misconduct that is distinctly non-criminal, such as breaches of municipal by-laws and police regulations, drunkenness, gaming and offences under the vagrancy acts.
Action in this case was optional, but after an interval of fifteen years the Police Act of 1856 made the rule compulsory, it being found that an efficient police force throughout England and Wales was necessary for the more effectual prevention and detection of crime, the suppression of vagrancy and the maintenance of good order.