Officers (Reversion to Unemployment).

Oral Answers to Questions — British Army. – in the House of Commons on 30th June 1942.

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Miss Ward:

asked the Secretary of State for War how many officers have been discharged as over age under the recent Army Council Instruction; and whether such instruction was differently interpreted by those responsible for carrying out the order?

Photo of Sir James Grigg Sir James Grigg , Cardiff East

The number of officers who, on account of advancing age or for various other reasons, have been reverted to unemployment under Army Council Instruction 422 of 1942, to which I assume my hon. Friend refers, is 1,504. All such cases have been examined at the War Office prior to the confirmation of the decision. Whilst absolute uniformity in such matters is impossible, this safe guard has, I think, ensured the application of a reasonably uniform standard.

Miss Ward:

Does my right hon. Friend imagine that everybody is completely satisfied with the interpretation of this Army Council Instruction?

Photo of Sir James Grigg Sir James Grigg , Cardiff East

I have never been so silly as to imagine that I can satisfy everybody.

Photo of Sir William Davison Sir William Davison , Kensington South

Is my right hon. Friend aware, from the figures that I have supplied, as well as from many others, that there is the very widest difference in the interpretations of this Army Order by those who have to work it?

Photo of Sir James Grigg Sir James Grigg , Cardiff East

No, I do not accept that.

Photo of Mr Herbert Williams Mr Herbert Williams , Croydon South

Is my right hon. Friend aware that in one case an officer who reverted to unemployment was told that there was no reflection on his integrity or his efficiency? Why was he dismissed?

Photo of Sir James Grigg Sir James Grigg , Cardiff East

At the beginning some officers were removed on grounds of age alone. Those cases have been reviewed.

Photo of Mr Herbert Williams Mr Herbert Williams , Croydon South

Is my right hon. Friend aware that it was after review that this officer was told that there was no reflection on his integrity or efficiency?

Photo of Sir James Grigg Sir James Grigg , Cardiff East

Perhaps the hon. Member will give me particulars.

Photo of Mr Oliver Locker-Lampson Mr Oliver Locker-Lampson , Birmingham Handsworth

Are there any young people working at the War Office?