HC Deb 23 June 1890 vol 345 c1656

I beg to ask the Under Secretary of State for the Colonies whether any inquiry will be made into the condition of the people resident in the Great Turk and Caicos Islands; and whether, considering the recent Colonial Report upon the chronic destitution there prevailing, some practical steps will be taken to relieve and remedy the poor people's pressing wants?


No such inquiry is proposed, as the Secretary of State learns from periodical Reports that the inhabitants, though not well off, are as prosperous as those of many other parts of the West Indies, and that they are cheerful and orderly. The destitution mentioned in the Report for 1888, to which I presume the hon. Member refers, was exceptional, and was caused by the hurricane; but a sum of between £800 and £1,000 appears to have been spent by the local Relief Committee upon the sufferers by that calamity. The prosperty of the poorer class-depends chiefly on the salt industry, which fluctuates from year to year, but it is hoped that the fibre industry will shortly be introduced. The Commissioners of Turks Islands have spared no pains to ameliorate the condition of the people; a savings bank has been established, and has been eagerly taken advantage of; and mail communication with the islands has been improved.

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