Merchant Navy Personnel

Oral Answers to Questions — National Service – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 24th July 1951.

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Photo of Sir Charles Taylor Sir Charles Taylor , Eastbourne 12:00 am, 24th July 1951

asked the Minister of Labour whether he will now consider exempting from National Service men who have served five years with the Merchant Navy.

Mr. Lee:

No, Sir. Employment in the Merchant Navy in peace time is not regarded as equivalent to National Service and, as in the case of a coalminer or agricultural worker, a young man born in or after 1929 who leaves the Merchant Navy before reaching the age of 26 is liable to call-up under the National Service Acts.

Photo of Sir Charles Taylor Sir Charles Taylor , Eastbourne

Is it not wrong to call up these men for service in the Army when it is obvious that, in case of emergency, they will be re-called either to the Merchant Navy or to the Royal Navy?

Mr. Lee:

That question might be applied to a whole series of people in industry.