§ MR. W. REDMOND (Clare, E.)
I beg to ask the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland whether his attention has been drawn to the failure 445 of the potato crop in many districts of County Clare; and, whether the Government intend to take any steps to avert the distress likely to be felt in the districts affected?
The condition of the small occupiers and labouring classes, as affected by the partial failure of the potato crop in County Clare, has formed the subject of careful investigation by the Local Government Board, and the result of the inquiries made is, that, although many families have been reduced to straitened circumstances from this cause, yet it is not considered that at present destitution exists among the people to such an extent as to render it necessary to adopt exceptional measures for their relief. The numbers now on relief in the various Unions in the county compare favourably with the numbers at the corresponding period of last year, with the exception of the Tulla Union, where there has been an increase in the number of persons to whom outdoor relief has been given. This, however, may be due to the fact that outdoor relief had to be reduced in this Union last year. The condition of Clare is receiving very careful attention, and timely notice will be given to Government of any change in the circumstances of the people.