HC Deb 12 July 1904 vol 137 c1352

To ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland if he is aware of the state of dirt and neglect to which the poor of Irish workhouses are exposed; that in many of these institutions there are no baths, water-closets, water supply, or other sanitary conveniences; and whether, seeing that these institutions are inspected by non-professional inspectors, without any scientific attainments or special knowledge, he will direct that in future these institutions, and especially the hospitals, shall be inspected by medical and not lay inspectors.

(Answered by Mr. Wyndham.) The poor in Irish workhouses are not in a state of dirt and neglect. They are much cleaner and are better cared for than the poor outside the workhouses. If, however, the hon. Member will refer me to any workhouse in which it is suggested that the contrary is the case I shall be pleased to cause an investigation to be made. The workhouses are visited periodically by experienced lay inspectors, and I am not aware that they discharge their duty less efficiently because they have no scientific attainments. The workhouse hospitals are inspected by two medical inspectors specially appointed for the purpose.