HC Deb 01 December 1937 vol 329 cc2053-4
24. Lieut.-Commander Fletcher

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty, how many cases have been brought to his notice of men serving in the Royal Navy whose wives and children are drawing relief from public assistance committees; and whether he will make inquiries?

Mr. Cooper

The Board of Admiralty know that there are cases of the kind to which the hon. and gallant Member refers, but they are confined to men who have married under the age of 25, and every step is taken to ensure that men who join the Navy shall be made aware that they will not be entitled to marriage allowance if they marry under that age.

Lieut.-Commander Fletcher

Having regard to the modern view about the age at which one should marry, would the right hon. Gentleman consider some reduction in the age 25, which seems unnecessarily high?

Mr. Cooper

The hon. and gallant Gentleman will be aware that this is a question that affects all the Services, and that one Service Minister could not give an undertaking or express a view.

Lieut.-Commander Fletcher

Will not the right hon. Gentleman consult the heads of the other Services in this matter?

Mr. Macquisten

Are not all the men in the Services medically examined and seen to be fit, and should not they be encouraged to marry so as to keep up the stock?

Mr. Pethick-Lawrence

Could all this information be made available to the Minister of Health, in connection with his population statistics?