Dáil Éireann - Volume 77 - 15 November, 1939

Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Glencree Reformatory.

Mr. Dillon asked the Minister for Education whether he is aware of the serious inadequacy of the accommodation and amenities at Glencree Reformatory, and what steps he proposes to take to furnish the Reverend Director of that institution with requisite means to provide satisfactory treatment for the boys detained there.

Minister for Education (the Taoiseach): I am aware that accommodation in Glencree Reformatory is unsatisfactory and steps are being taken with a view to finding alternative and adequate accommodation as quickly as possible.

Mr. Dillon: Is the Minister aware that the conditions in Glencree Reformatory have been obtaining for some considerable time; that there are only two dormitories for 190 boys; that there are only four indoor lavatories for 190 boys, and that in winter they have to dig their way through four feet of snow on occasions to get to the outdoor lavatories; that there is no laundry, with the result that clothes cannot be washed; that that state of affairs has been going on for a considerable time, and that the attention of his colleague, who is now Minister for Lands, had been directed to it; and will he press on the Minister for Finance the acute urgency of having suitable accommodation provided so that the Rev. Director's work can be carried on, as [1332] the Rev. Director is peculiarly qualified to carry it on?

The Taoiseach: I have visited Glencree and seen the conditions there, as has my predecessor. We propose as soon as we can to get the alternative accommodation which I have referred to. I think it would be quite impossible without the expenditure of very large sums—wasteful expenditure it would seem to me—to put the existing building into a proper condition.

Mr. Dillon: I quite agree, and if alternative accommodation is being sought for, I think that is the proper course.