HC Deb 13 December 1944 vol 406 cc1211-2
10. Miss Rathbone

asked the Secretary of State for Air on what ground are education officers in the R.A.F. given lower rank than chaplains in the same units, education officers ranking as flight-lieutenants while chaplains of equivalent service rank as squadron-leaders.

Sir A. Sinclair

The R.A.F. ranks of education officers vary from pilot officer to air commodore, according to their civilian gradings and/or their length of service. The honorary ranks held by chaplains vary from squadron leader to air commodore, mainly according to length of service. The duties discharged by these two Services are not comparable, and I am not aware that the differences between the R.A.F. ranks accorded to them have, in practice, given rise to any difficulties.

Miss Rathbone

Is not this likely to cause some discontent among education officers?

Sir A. Sinclair

I do not think so; I think it is fair as between the two. The hon. Lady must remember that chaplains, as a rule, enter the Service at a much older age.

Sir Herbert Williams

Would it not be much better to give them a title which defines their job? Why not call them "sky pilots," as they are commonly called?