HC Deb 10 March 1898 vol 54 cc1218-9
MR. W. O'MALLEY (Galway, Connemara)

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether he is aware that a Local Government Board Inspector has ordered the dismissal of the assistant relieving officer for the Clifden Union on the grounds that he allowed a certain number of men to receive employment on the labour test relief works, while such men were the owners of some live stock and such small property as boats, &c.; and whether it is a necessary condition that recipients of such relief must be absolutely destitute of all goods and chattels before they obtain relief?


The Local Government Board have recently required a temporary relieving officer in the Clifden Union to resign that position on the grounds of inefficiency. This officer was an old man in bad health, and, evidently, physically unequal to his duties. He failed to enter on his relief lists the names of the persons on the relief works, and, owing either to his want of knowledge of his duties or to his inability to make sufficient inquiries, he was in the habit of certifying persons to be destitute who were earning money, and were possessed of means, and who were not proper cases to be supported by the ratepayers. The special relief measures this year are intended for the occupiers of small holdings, who, owing to the failure of the potato crop, might, if not relieved on the works, have to come into the workhouse; but, beyond submitting this general condition for the guidance of Boards of Guardians, the Local Government Board do not limit their discretion as to the eligibility of individual applicants for relief.