HC Deb 24 January 1940 vol 356 cc561-2
25. Mr. Robert Gibson

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether he is aware that there is serious discontent among naval ratings in respect of prohibitions against posting letters while ashore and of stringent penalties imposed on ratings who, while ashore, have posted letters to wives, while at the same time naval officers have been met by their wives on the pier; and what steps he proposes to take to eliminate this discrimination, restore the naval ratings against the penalties imposed, and remove the grounds for this discontent?

The Civil Lord of the Admiralty (Captain Austin Hudson)

I am not aware of any such discrimination as alleged by the hon. and learned Member. The naval censorship regulations which prohibit the posting of letters ashore by naval personnel apply equally to officers and men. Both officers and men may ask their wives to join them at a port after their ship has arrived there, but neither officers nor men may reveal the prospective movements of their ships. Disciplinary action has been taken when such information has been revealed to wives.

Mr. Gibson

Can the Minister say whether this disciplinary action has been exclusively exercised in cases of ratings or officers?

Captain Hudson

Equally between ratings and officers.