HC Deb 06 March 1918 vol 103 cc1949-50

asked the Secretary to the Admiralty whether he will consider such pay of the junior commissioned ranks as will enable any suitable man from the lower deck to accept a commission and fittingly support his position from his own resources?


I may recall my hon. Friend's attention to the statement upon this point made yesterday by the First Lord, as follows: In order to meet to some extent the increased cost of living, increases of pay have been granted to the junior ranks of officers supplemented by allowances in respect of children. This has enabled us to consider still further the question of promotion from the lower deck, because it is hoped that in many cases it will remove the objection on financial grounds which might prevent men from the lower deck taking commissioned rank. I can assure my hon. Friend that the question of promotion to commissioned rank from the lower deck continues to receive our closest attention, and that we fully appreciate the aspirations of the men and desire, as far as practicable, to meet them.


Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that at the age at which a lower-deck man receives his promotion he is usually married, and that the pay of the junior officer in the Service is not enough to keep a man with a wife and children?


That is true with regard to those of long service, but since July, 1912, we have introduced the Mate Scheme. This gives much younger men a chance of promotion, and I should be very glad to tell the House what has been done in this direction.


Is it right that there should be such a rate of pay for these officers that they are unable to marry, sup posing they are not married when they receive their promotion?