HC Deb 20 June 1944 vol 401 cc13-5
18. Mr. G. Strauss

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that some of the suits made for discharged Service men are of shoddy material, roughly thrown together, and, because of their fit and appearance, quite unwearable by self-respecting men; and will he take steps to see that all these suits are up to standard.

Sir J. Grigg

If my hon. Friend will give me particulars of these cases, they will be investigated. In any case, as I indicated in a reply to my hon. and gallant Friend the Member for Petersfield (Sir G. Jeffreys) on 9th May, as soon as supplies are available of the suits which will be issued to men discharged on the termination of hostilities, they will be issued instead of the present suits.

Mr. Strauss

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that some of these suits are so bad that there must be something seriously wrong with the manufacture? It is not a question of looking into individual cases, but of looking into the whole system.

Sir J. Grigg

Perhaps the hon. Member will give me specific instances of complaints, so that I can follow them up.

28. Sir Irving Albery

asked the Secretary of State for War the proposed instructions regarding the issue of overcoats to men discharged from the Army and the degree of responsibility which rests with medical boards.

26. General Sir George Jeffreys

asked the Secretary of State for War whether he is aware that men may be discharged from the Army as unfit for further service whilst still patients in hospital, and that, if their discharge from the Army takes place between 1st March and 1st October but they do not leave hospital until the winter, greatcoats are not issued to them; and will he take steps to see that greatcoats, or an allowance in lieu, are always issued to men leaving hospital in the winter, regardless of the date of their discharge from the Service.

Sir J. Grigg

Under existing regulations, a soldier discharged on medical grounds is supplied with a civilian overcoat or a cash allowance in lieu if he is sent home between 1st October and 31st March; a similar issue may be made if a man is sent home at any other time, provided a medical board recommends such an issue. A soldier discharged on other than medican grounds between 1st October and 31st March, who is without a civilian overcoat or sufficient funds to provide one, may be supplied with one from store, provided that the medical officer of the unit recommends such an issue. The coat in this case is charged against the man's account.

Mr. Bellenger

Will the right hon. Gentleman give consideration to this matter, as, at whatever season of the year a man is discharged, he will want an overcoat at some time?

Sir J. Grigg

That will be automatically considered when the present arrangements are changed. At any rate, a very good raincoat will be included.