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1 entry for Paul Blake


This case concerned a boy Paul Blake,5 who escaped from Glin following a severe punishment and went home to his mother. The story is recounted in a letter from a local councillor to the Minister for Education and the Minister for Justice: It is my distasteful duty to draw your attention to what I consider is a matter of paramount public importance. [A boy’s mother] called upon me on Wednesday last the 1st instant together with her son ... whom she stated was committed to Glin Industrial School. She further stated that the boy had escaped from the institution on the previous day, Tuesday 31st ultimo. She stated that he had received a flogging on Monday the 30th ultimo. She invited me to examine her son’s back which bore numerous dark stripes. There were also sores visible on the boy’s back. I issued a dispensary ticket to [a doctor] to have the youth examined at William Street Garda Station, Limerick, on the evening of Wednesday the 1st instant, three days after the alleged flogging had taken place. He (the doctor) informed me that the boy’s back bore evidence of having received a flogging. On questioning the boy, prior to his agreeing to surrender himself to the Garda authorities, he informed me that, as a result of his having not returned to the Industrial School at the end of the holiday period he was stripped of his clothes and flogged with a whip which had a number of leather thongs attached thereto. 1.Will you please state:- If a form of punishment so described by this boy is prescribed by law in certain cases in Industrial Schools and Borstal Institutions. 2.If the recipient of such treatment is compelled to be stripped or partly stripped of his clothing. 3.If it is compulsory for the Superior or other authorized person of an Industrial School or Borstal Institution to inflict such treatment in certain circumstances. 4.If the use of a whip with a number of leather thongs is prescribed and permitted. 5.If the report from Glin Industrial School agrees with the statement made to me by [the boy]. 6.If it does not in what respect does it differ. I may mention in conclusion that on Wednesday night this boy who handed himself over to the Garda authorities, later escaped from the members of the Glin Institution who had been sent to collect him at Limerick.

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