§ 28. Mr. JOWETT
asked whether, having regard to the number of men classified B3 who are being employed on merely nominal duties in the different camps throughout the country, and having further regard to the fact that most of these men could find useful employment suitable to their physical condition if they were at home with their families where circumstances could be made more favourable for them, he will arrange for the discharge of all B3 men who have served overseas?
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
I am afraid that I cannot adopt my hon. Friend's suggestion. These men are employed on duties which result in the release of men in higher categories for service overseas.
§ 89. Mr. HERBERT SAMUEL
asked the Minister of National Service whether a large proportion of the men who have been classified for military service in Grade 3 are so classified only in order that they may be available for re-examination, should a change in the national circumstances render a further review of manpower necessary; whether he is aware that there is much uneasiness among Grade 3 men, and particularly those engaged in one-man businesses, as to their position; and whether he can make any statement as to the prospect of their being called up for service?
§ The MINISTER of NATIONAL SERVICE (Sir Auckland Geddes)
Formerly a certain number of men were placed in Grade 3 in order to provide an opportunity for diagnosing the affection from which they were suffering. Under the instructions now current, a man who is temporarily unfit for posting on account of some acute transient affection (e.g., measles or scarlet fever), or whose case requires some special test, is not graded, but is notified that he must again attend for the completion of his examination and grading upon a definite date at an appropriate interval of time. In all other cases 1023 men are now placed at once in the grade for which they are considered physically fit. Men who are found to be permanently and totally unfit for any form of military service are given a final discharge.
With regard to the second part of the question put by my right hon. Friend, a limited number of Grade 3 men of the old military age are at present required and are being called up for service in the Army and the Air Force, but only to fulfil certain definite duties and in accordance with certain specific demands submitted by the forces monthly. Grade 3 men of the new military age are not at present being called up for service. If it should be necessary to call them up at a later date they will be entitled to make application to the tribunal for exemption within seven days of the date of their calling-up notices. I would remind my right hon. Friend of the special instructions issued by the Local Government Board to tribunals with regard to Grade 3 men conducting one-man businesses. Under these instructions such men may be granted exemption conditional on their doing work of national importance, provided it appears to the tribunal that their business would be closed down, either at once or in the near future, as the result of their being taken for military service.