HC Deb 15 April 1948 vol 449 c1162
45. Mr. Vane

asked the Minister of Labour why Mr. J. W. Earle, of Lupton, Holme, Westmorland, has been refused permission by his Department to leave his present employment in order to join the police force, after he has been accepted by the Chief Constable of Burnley.

The Minister of Labour (Mr. Isaacs)

Mr. Earle is an experienced agricultural worker. Quite exceptional measures are now in operation to build up the labour force of the agricultural industry and these measures must necessarily involve the retention in the industry, as far as possible, of every experienced worker. In the circumstances it was not possible for my Department to permit Mr. Earle to join the Police Force.

Mr. Vane

Does the right hon. Gentleman think it is in the interests of the police force, which is much under strength, or of the country generally, that volunteers, such as Mr. Earle, should be refused the opportunity to spend their lives serving in this force, as a result of these dictatorial rules and regulations?

Mr. Isaacs

The hon. Gentleman asks me what I think. I think that the need to carry out the Control of Engagement Order and to keep manned up the agricultural industry is paramount.

Mr. Boyd-Carpenter

Will the right hon. Gentleman consult with his right hon. Friend the Home Secretary in order to ascertain whether the need for reinforcements to the police has not become even more acute in the last 24 hours?