HC Deb 22 December 1915 vol 77 cc488-9W

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he is aware that Dublin soldiers who are fighting in the trenches have recently been prosecuted and convicted in their absence as defaulters under the Vaccination (Ireland) Act; is he aware that if those soldiers had resided in Great Britain they would have been able to avoid the risk of such proceedings by making a declaration of conscientious objection to the vaccination of their children; and whether he will give instructions to boards of guardians in Ireland for the suspension of the issuing of summonses for non-vaccination until such opportune time as the law on this subject shall in Ireland be made similar to that which obtains in Great Britain, and thus conform to the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Vaccination?


Legal proceedings have recently been instituted in Dublin against defaulters under the Vaccination Acts. The papers do not show whether the persons in default were civilians or whether any of them belonged to the Army. There are no exemptions from vaccination, and it would be most unfair if children were not protected from the danger of smallpox while their fathers were at the War. As regards the latter part of the question, I would refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the question on this subject asked by the hon. Member for the Dublin Harbour Division on the 23rd of November.