HC Deb 19 June 1903 vol 123 cc1428-9
DR. THOMPSON (Monaghan, N.)

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, whether his attention has been called to the fact that the Secretary of the Local Government Board, in April, 1902, intimated to Dr. Barrett, recently Medical Officer of the Macroom Workhouse, against whom no charge of neglect of duty has been made during his service, that if he did not resign within a week he would be dismissed without further notice and without pension; and, if so, will he state whether this action was taken with his sanction; and whether the Local Government Board would furnish Dr. Barrett with copies of its order and correspondence in relation thereto.

(Answered by Mr. Wyndham.) For a number of years there had been constant friction between the officers of this workhouse, a condition of things for which Dr. Barrett was held to be mainly responsible. In 1899 the guardians suspended him from the performance of his duties, and the Local Government Board thereupon directed a sworn inquiry to be held into the matter, as a result of which the Board came to the conclusion that the step taken by the guardians was justified. Dr. Barrett was made aware of the charges preferred against him in the ordinary way. Subsequently to this inquiry he gave an undertaking to work harmoniously with the other officers of the union, and in view of this undertaking the Local Government Board did not at the time press for his resignation. He continued, however, to be a source of constant trouble to the guardians, and the Board accordingly formed the opinion that in the interests of good government of the workhouse he should be called upon to retire from the position of medical officer, failing which the extreme step of dismissal would be resorted to. An intimation to this effect was duly conveyed to him in April, 1902. He resigned, and was granted a retiring pension. It is not proposed to furnish him with a copy of the correspondence that has passed in the matter.