HC Deb 29 February 1916 vol 80 cc859-60

asked by what procedure men rejected as unfit for service since 14th August, 1915, who have been induced, owing to a misapprehension, to submit themselves to re-examination and have been accepted, can claim to be excepted from service in terms of the Military Service Act, 1916?


The point raised by my hon. Friend was dealt with by me on several occasions last week, and has also been the subject of an announcement in the Press. I may add that I have caused lists of individual complaints to be referred to General Officers Commanding the several commands accompanied by the following letter:—

"War Office,

London, S.W.,


Sir,—I am directed to forward the attached list giving names and particulars of men who state that they have been rejected for the Army since 14th August, 1915, and have been subjected to a second medical examination under a misapprehension.

I am therefore to request that each individual case may at once be inquired into, and if it is found that any of these men have been misled through action taken on behalf of the recruiting authorities, their attestations if they so desire must at once be cancelled, and their former rejection allowed to stand.

In cases where men are under the impression that their second medical examination was irregular, and subsequent inquiries prove that they are under a misapprehension, it should be explained to them by the recruiting officer that the second examination undertaken at their own request for the purpose of securing an armlet, disclosed their eligibility for certain classes of military service for which recruits had not previously been specially enlisted,

I am to add that where it is found that injustice has been done to any man which is due to the recruiting authorities, steps should at once be taken to remedy the individual injustice, and to prevent the recurrence of any such irregularities.

A report on the action taken in each individual case should be forwarded to this Office forthwith. I am, Sir, Your obedient Servant,—Director of Recruiting."


On what date was that letter sent?


It was sent out on Sunday.


Will the question whether these men have been misled or not be decided by the officials who, they allege, misled them?


Oh, no! If my hon. Friend had listened to the letter which I have read out he would have seen that it is directed to the commandants. There is no idea of addressing it to recruiting officers.

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