HC Deb 05 July 1949 vol 466 cc1944-5
14. Mr. Awbery

asked the Minister of Labour if he is aware that youths between the ages of 17½ and 18 years are being dismissed from their employment before being called for National Service; and since such action enables employers to evade their obligation for re-instatement at the expiration of the service period, whether he will consider introducing legislation to prevent it.

Mr. Isaacs

I have received very few complaints of this kind, but if my hon. Friend has any particular case in mind I should be grateful if he would let me have particulars. The dismissal of an employee by reason of his liability for National Service constitutes an offence under Section 50 of the National Service Act, 1948. The point is, therefore, covered by existing legislation.

Mr. Awbery

Is my right hon. Friend aware that these young men are told that if they become apprentices they can get deferment and be reinstated in their jobs after they leave the Forces but that if they do not choose to become apprentices they are usually dismissed about three months before they are called up for service?

Mr. Isaacs

That would be rather good evidence of interference with the purposes of the Act, and I should like to have particulars of any such case.