The First Inter Party Government

The First Inter-Party Government 1948-51

Why is it important?

    • It brought an end to 16 years of Fianna Fail being in charge

    • It was the 1st Coalition (more than 1 party) Government in Ireland

What parties were involved? Fine Gael – Labour – National Labour – Clann na Talmhan (farmers party) – Clann na Poblachta (peoples party) – Independent T.D’s

Some of the main people involved?

John A. Costello (Fine Gael) Taoiseach

William Norton (Labour) Tanaiste

Richard Mulcahy (Fine Gael) Minister for Education

Sean MacBride (Clann na Poblachta) Minister for External Affairs

Dr. Noel Browne (Clann na Poblachta) Minister for Health

Archbishop John Charles McQuaid (Against the Mother and Child Scheme)

Important things that took happened?

    • The Declaration of an Irish Republic, 1949

    - Changed the name of the country from the Irish Free State to the Irish Republic

    - Happened in Easter 1949

    - Northern Ireland still under British rule – De Valera is unhappy

    - Ireland was a fully sovereign, independent state

    - However the issue of partition would still dominate politics for many years to come

    • Dr. Noel Browne and the TB Crisis

    - Tuberculosis (TB) was one of the worst diseases in Ireland at the time

    - Over ½ who caught it died from it

    - All ages but especially teens and those in their 20’s

    - Catching TB was often considered a source of shame & people tried to hide the fact that family members had the disease

    - Dr. Noel Browne’s parents & other family members had died from TB

    - Sanatoria which were special hospitals to cater for TB patients were built

    - 5500 special hospital beds were provided & new drugs were developed

    - Between 1947 & 57 the death rate from TB fell from 124 per 100,000 to 24 per 100,000

    • Dr. Noel Browne and the Mother and Child Scheme (see notes)