HC Deb 04 July 1906 vol 160 cc53-4

I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord-Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been called to a resolution adopted at a special meeting of the committee of management of the Cork District Lunatic Asylum on June 28th protesting against the proposed change in the Act 1 Edw. 7, c. 17; whether he is aware that this change would result in a loss to the Cork District Lunatic Asylum of from £500 to £600 per annum, and would throw back as paupers many men who have served their country in the † See (4) Debates, clviii., 83 (Mr. Reddy); Army and Navy; and whether, if the Act be changed, steps will be taken to secure that the ordinary criminal lunatic be paid for on the same scale in Ireland as in England, viz., 14s. per week, this arrangement to have retrospective effect back to the date of the passing of the Act of 1884 for England.


I have received the resolution referred to, and I understand the prospective loss to the Cork District lunatic asylum, will be approximately as stated. I am informed that the payments made during the last three years to Lunatic Asylums in Ireland in respect of lunatic soldiers and sailors who are not criminals, amount in all to about £3,500 a year, which would not have been paid but for the verbal error in the Act of 1901. As regards the concluding paragraph of the Question, I may state that in Ireland the gross average cost is paid by the Government for criminal lunatics, and therefore if the amount were increased as suggested the asylums would receive for the maintenance of criminal lunatics more than their actual cost. I understand that the cost of maintenance is higher in English than in Irish asylums.


asked why the Irish Government did not deal with this matter instead of leaving it to the Treasury.


replied that it was a matter of departmental courtesy and etiquette. It would require more time than was afforded by the limits of an Answer to a Question to explain the relations between the two Departments.


But something ought to be done to remedy this injustice.


It does not appear from the answer supplied to me that there is an injustice.


Did any public body in Ireland ask for this alteration?


I cannot say.