HC Deb 26 February 1918 vol 103 cc1228-9

asked the Under-Secretary of State for War if his attention has been directed to the urgent appeal of Sir Arthur Yapp for lady volunteers to serve in canteens in Holland; and if he will state on what grounds the War Office has refused to allow wives, mothers, sisters, or daughters to act as volunteers, so that they may have at any rate a glimpse of their loved ones who, in many cases, have been subjected to the grossest ill-treatment?


The answer to the first part of the question is in the affirmative. On the understanding that the Young Men's Christian Association will pay the expenses of the relatives of non commissioned officers, whom they select as voluntary workers, who are not in a position to defray their own expenses, the War Office will raise no objection to the limited number so selected going.


Will that apply to officers as well as non-commissioned officers?


I was dealing with a very difficult question—very difficult, indeed—of allowing people who cannot afford to pay their own expenses, while not giving any privileges to the wives of non-commissioned officers.