HC Deb 12 March 1941 vol 369 cc1276-7
37. Mr. Wedgwood

asked the First Lord of the Admiralty whether, as anti-Nazi women aliens of German-Jewish origin are now being admitted on like terms with British to the ranks of the Auxiliary Territorial Service and the air-raid precautions Services, he will now permit approved cases to enter the Women's Royal Naval Service?

Sir V. Warrender

So long as there continues to be a satisfactory number of British recruits for the W.R.N.S. my right hon. Friend feels bound to give preference to women of British nationality. The Admiralty, however, in specific cases, would not debar women with specially suitable qualifications on account of nationality. This question is being kept tinder review in the light of the recruiting position.

Mr. Wedgwood

Am I to understand from the Minister's answer that there is a bar against these women in the Navy which does not exist in the other Forces of the Crown, and, if so, why?

Sir V. Warrender

No, Sir. I have said that there is no definite bar against them, providing they have special qualifications, but in view of the fact that we have no difficulty whatever in obtaining recruits for this Service, my right hon. Friend thinks that it is better to give preference to British women.