HC Deb 30 March 1882 vol 268 c293

asked the President of the Board of Trade, Whether his attention has been drawn to the violence and ill-treatment to which emigrants are subjected at Queenstown by runners and touts belonging to the different lodging-houses; whether his attention has been more particularly directed to a recent ease where the baggage of some young girls, who were desirous of spending the night at Miss O'Brien's Emigrant Home, was seized and detained until a sum of money was paid for its recovery, which, sooner than lose their passages, the emigrants were compelled to pay; and, whether the Board of Trade, in conjunction with, the Irish Government, will take steps to prevent such violence and extortion in future?


Sir, my attention has been drawn to the subject of this Question by letters from Miss O'Brien and in other ways, and I am afraid it is a fact that the conduct of runners and touts belonging to the different lodging-houses in Queenstown has been extremely bad in some cases. I have communicated with the Irish Office, and I am informed that it is a fact that some young girls have been detained in the way mentioned by the hon. Member, and a charge of 5s. demanded. That sum was afterwards reduced to 2s., which was paid, but afterwards returned. The whole matter is under investigation.