HC Deb 11 May 1883 vol 279 cc523-4

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, Whether his attention has been drawn to a resolution adopted on the 16th ultimo by the Tobercurry (county Sligo) Board of Guardians, condemning the conduct of certain local landlords in evicting nineteen families, after the parish priest, the Reverend J. Conlon, bad several times proposed terms of settlement which he considered fair; whether the families in question have been obliged to resort to the Board of Guardians for assistance; and, whether the Irish Government will consider the expediency of refusing to grant the aid of the armed forces of the Crown in carrying out evictions, in cases where there is proof that fair terms had been offered on the side of the tenant, and that the landlord had refused to entertain them? He also wished, in putting the Question, to know whether the right hon. Gentleman had seen the report made by Mr. N. Devine, who visited these poor people on the 19th ultimo, and described their condition as wretched and miserable in the extreme; and whether any steps would be taken to prevent the loss of life amongst them from exposure and starvation?


Sir, I have seen the resolution referred to, and also the report of Mr. Devine. I am informed that the families in question have applied to the Board of Guardians, and are getting outdoor relief. I am not prepared to recommend legislation with the object of carrying out the suggestion contained in the last paragraph of the hon. Member's Question. The Sheriff is entitled by law to call for the protection of anyone, including military and police, in carrying out the process of the law.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that the period during which the Guardians can legally give outdoor relief to these families is now expired?

[No reply was given.]


I would ask the right hon. Gentleman to consider the case during the Recess, and see what can be done.