HC Deb 18 July 1940 vol 363 c368
2. Mr. Lewis

asked the Minister of Labour whether he will consider the desirability of forming a national labour corps in which all conscientious objectors should be enrolled for service on works in connection with National Defence at Army rates of pay?

14. Captain Strickland

asked the Minister of Labour whether, in order to put an end to the present anomalous position of conscientious objectors, he will take steps to enrol them into a non-combatant organisation to undertake useful work of national importance on the same conditions, pay and allowances as those obtaining in the Armed Forces of the Crown?

Mr. Bevin

As at present advised, I do not see my way to propose the formation of special organisations of conscientious objectors of the kind suggested in the Questions. I may add, however, that while I deprecate most strongly any victimisation of conscientious objectors by their employers, I am considering whether it would be practicable to require that the difference between the remuneration of a conscientious objector in civil employment and the value of a soldier's pay and rations should be paid into a Central Fund and devoted to some special purpose.

Mr. MacLaren

Will the Minister consider raising a special detachment of Napoleonic drapers?

Mr. Bevin

Perhaps the hon. Member will accept the command.

Mr. R. Gibson

Will the Minister consider making similar arrangements for men who are, technically, physically unfit?