HC Deb 01 November 1916 vol 86 c1690

asked the Secretary for War whether his attention has been called to the protests made at the Romford Urban Tribunal against the practice of sending unfit men into the Army; that two applicants who appeared before this tribunal stated that, after the most cursory examination at Warley, they had been passed for general service though holding medical certificates showing that they were quite unfit; that one member of the tribunal remarked that it was absurd to send such men for general service unless they wanted wrecks; that another member of the tribunal told of a Romford man, obviously weak and unfit, who was passed for general service and was dead ten days after joining, whereupon the military representative remarked that he would probably have died in any case; and whether he can state what further action the War Office propose to take in regard to such cases?


My attention has not been called to any particular representations made by the Romford Urban Tribunal, although I am, of course, aware that remarks have on several occasions been made at various tribunals about the efficiency of medical boards. Mistakes may have been made, but I can say without hesitation that the attacks made on medical boards have in the overwhelming majority of cases been found to be quite unjustified. The recruiting medical boards are not perfect, but they are composed of civilian medical men, and they are undoubtedly performing an exceedingly difficult and unpleasant task loyally and well.