HC Deb 04 March 1942 vol 378 cc623-4
8. Mr. Bellenger

asked the Secretary of State for Air whether any differentiation is made between pay and rank of officers and other ranks when transferred to ground staff through incapacity caused by flying operations?

Captain Balfour

Regular officers of the General Duties Branch transferred to a ground branch on account of wounds or injuries received in flying operations continue to receive General Duties Branch rates of pay. As for non-regular officers who are so transferred, pilots, observers and observers (radio) retain General Duties Branch rates of pay (including increments) until such time as, by promotion, the pay of the branch to which they are transferred becomes more favourable. Officer air gunners may, at the discretion of the Air Council, receive similar treatment, but normally only if they have given six months' effective service in the General Duties Branch. The arrangements for airmen were outlined in the reply given to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Bolton (Sir E. Cadogan) on 25th February.

Mr. Bellenger

Does not this answer mean that different considerations apply to other ranks and to officers, and if I am correct in that assumption, will my right hon. and gallant Friend look into this matter again and see that no discrimination is made between commissioned and other ranks when they are grounded through no fault of their own?

Captain Balfour

I think if my hon. Friend will examine the reply given on 25th February and this reply, he will see that there is no discrimination. I should be very glad to give him further detailed information as to the relevant orders if he would care to have it.

Major Sir Edward Cadogan

Is the right hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that I supplied the Secretary of State with the details of a case of a non-commissioned officer who has lost his sergeant's stripes after being transferred to the ground staff as a result of a wound received during operations?