HC Deb 03 November 1882 vol 274 cc756-7

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether he is aware that scarlatina broke out in the Constabulary Barrack at Arklow, and that a child died of the disease; whether he is aware that the Barrack is the most isolated building in the town, and has two vacant wings, notwithstanding which fact the medical attendant ordered the men's families to leave and go into lodgings in the town, to the great consternation of the inhabitants; whether this order was carried out as late as eleven o'clock at night; whether it is the fact that complaints were made against the head constable for taking the complaints of the men against the medical attendant, and that after the investigation by the county inspector the head constable was sent to Connaught; and, finally, whether he will order an independent inquiry on oath into the whole facts of the case, including the alleged stoppage of one shilling per month from each man's pay for medical attendance?


I find, Sir, that scarlatina did break out in the Constabulary barrack at Arklow, and that two children died of the disease. The barrack is the most isolated building in the town. It has but one vacant wing, which, in consequence of the outbreak of scarlatina, has been occupied by the head constable's family. The medical attendant did not order the removal of the men's families from the barracks. The children were removed in accordance with the Regulations of the Force. Those affected were sent to hospital, while the remainder went with their parents into lodgings. The Sub-Inspector states that he is not aware that there was any consternation in the town, and that all the children had left the barrack before 9 o'clock in the evening. The medical attendant did complain of Head Constable M'Coy for inviting the men to express dissatisfaction and want of confidence in the Medical Officer; but, while the Inspector General considered that the head constable was wanting in discretion on the occasion, no censure or punishment was administered. The head constable's removal to Castlerea some time afterwards was wholly unconnected with the question relative to the medical attendant. The Inspector General informs me positively that there is no stoppage made from the men's pay for medical attendance, and I cannot see why an inquiry on oath should be asked for.