HC Deb 11 August 1890 vol 348 cc493-4
MR. O'KELLY (on behalf of Dr. FITZGERALD)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, with reference to the treatment of Mr. Jasper Tulley, editor of the Roscommon Herald, now a prisoner in Tullamore Gaol, if he can state what was the sentence imposed upon Mr. Jasper Tulley; is he aware that he is engaged in the labour of sack making, and that his hands are full of sores; that he has lost two stone in weight during the two months he has been in prison; and that he is now suffering from an attack of diarrhœa; and, if so, why is he not placed under hospital treatment; and if the sentence did not include hard labour, why is the work of sack-making imposed upon the prisoner?


As stated in reply to a question put by the hon. Member on 4th inst. the prisoner mentioned is undergoing concurrent sentences of 14 days' and three calendar months' imprisonment without hard labour. He was informed that he could be exempt from work by paying for his food. For four days, however, he did not take advantage of this, and was accordingly given some sacks to make. On the expiration of the four days he commenced payment for his food, and was forth with relieved from all work. But at his special request he was allowed by the Governor to have a few sacks for his personal occupation on the clear understanding that it was at his own desire. There are no sores on the hands of this prisoner. He has lost nine and a half pounds, not two stone, in weight, from his reception into prison on 10th June up to the 9th inst. He is not suffering from the complaint mentioned, which only lasted for a few days, and ceased on 30th ultimo Sack-making is the chief form of industry in Tullamore Prison. It is engaged in by both hard labour and by such non-hard labour prisoners as do not pay for their food; but the latter class of prisoners receive a smaller quantity of this work to perform in a given time than the hard labour prisoners. I may add that I am informed that the Freeman's Journal of to-day contains a report from its Tullamore correspondent stating that Dr. Moorhead, J.P., had visited the prison on Saturday and found the prisoner in question in "excellent health and spirits," and that "there is no foundation for the prevailing rumours that he is in bad health."