HC Deb 19 July 1916 vol 84 cc995-6
44 and 53. Mr. E. HARVEY

asked the Secretary of State for War (1) whether any steps have yet been taken to liberate Mr. Walter Robinson from military control, in view of the fact that the Middlesbrough Local Tribunal has granted him a certificate exempting him from military service on condition that he became engaged in work of national importance; and (2) whether a man who, having been granted by a tribunal a certificate of exemption from combatant service only, applies for a reviewof the certificate and is granted by the tribunal a variation of the certificate exempting him from military service on condition that he becomes engaged on work of national importance, is debarred by any provision of the Military Service Act from obtaining that exemption by reason of his having in the meantime been called up for military service; and, if so, will he state the provision which so debars him?


The case of Mr. Walter Robinson appears to fall within the terms of the hon. Member's Question No. 53. With regard to this latter question, I am informed that doubt exists as to how far the provisions for review of certificates under the Military Service Act apply in the case of certificates of exemption from combatant service only. Such certificates, as the hon. Member is aware, are not certificates of exemption from military service. Further inquiry is being made into this point, and I will inform the hon. Member later of the conclusion reached.


asked the President of the Local Government Board whether he is aware that the Hendon Local Tribunal hold their sittings in private, and that members of the public, though friends of the applicants whose cases are being heard, are refused admission; and whether he will draw the attention of the chairman to the Regulations issued by the Local Government Board on this subject?


My right hon. Friend is informed by the local tribunal that the sittings are held in public and that members of the Press attend every sitting. Where the applicant expresses a wish for his case to be taken in private the tribunal do so.


asked the President of the Local Government Board if he will make an inquiry into the action of the majority of the members of the Aberdare Military Service Tribunal in refusing to allow Mr. Evan Parker to have a review of the certificate granted to his son, seeing that Parker is able to submit new facts to the tribunal in support of his claim that his son is absolutely indispensable in his business as a garage keeper and motor vehicle repairer; and will he instruct the tribunal to review the certificate?


I understand that a certificate of exemption was not granted in this case, therefore there can be no question of a review. It rests with the tribunal which finally decides a case to determine whether it shall be reheard.