Land Drainage.

Oral Answers to Questions — National War Effort. – in the House of Commons on 29th May 1941.

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Major Lloyd:

asked the Minister of Labour the number of volunteers over military age from professions or trades who have responded to his recent appeal to undertake land-drainage work; whether many such individuals are likely to be suitable for such hard labour calling for considerable technical knowledge; and why the ability to drive a motor-car has been included with the qualifications required for taking up land-drainage work?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I have no separate statistics of the number of men over military age from professions or trades who have volunteered for land-drainage work in response to my recent appeal. This work does not require technical knowledge or exceptional physical strength, and I am hopeful that some men of the type referred to will be found ready to undertake the work. Ability to drive a motor-car is not a necessary qualification for this work, but such knowledge would, of course, be useful to a man training to be a tractor driver.

Major Lloyd:

Is it not possible to obtain recruits for this kind of job from the regular unemployed? Have attempts been made to do so, and, if they have failed, could the right hon. Gentleman say why?

Photo of Mr Ernest Bevin Mr Ernest Bevin , Wandsworth Central

I have no regular unemployed. I do not think it is an unfair tiling to ask all parties to come forward and render national service.