§ 18. Mr. Gower
asked the Secretary of State for War whether he will take steps to ensure fuller consideration of applications from National Service men for compassionate leaves or postings; and, in particular, that wherever possible, two members of the same family shall not be required to perform their National or Reserve Service at the same time.
§ Mr. Head
It is my view and intention that all applications for compassionate leave should be most carefully investigated and sympathetically considered. They must, however, be restricted to real cases of hardship. In considering applications for deferment of Reserve training, the absence of another member of the family in the Services is always taken into account, if it contributes to the grounds of hardship.
§ Mr. Shurmer
Will the right hon. Gentleman consider more sympathetically than in the past the question of a National Service man who is the only child, whose father has died a few months previously to his call-up and within three months that man goes abroad, and a woman is left with a nervous break-down? I have had a number of cases of men who have been sent abroad without any consideration whatever.