HC Deb 29 June 1955 vol 543 cc369-70
1. Mr. Dodds

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air if he will give consideration to discharging 2726889 Leading Aircraftman D. L. Pearson on the grounds that the condition of his feet makes it undesirable that he should be retained; and if he is aware that this man has had operations to both feet at the Woodlands Hospital for Cripples and has never been fit enough to play games.

The Under-Secretary of State for Air (Mr. George Ward)

This airman was assessed Grade I in May, 1954, by a Ministry of Labour and National Service medical board. He has twice been medically examined by Royal Air Force doctors and found fit for service in any part of the world. The medical authorities consider his disability to be slight and not likely to be aggravated by his remaining in the Service.

It is true that Leading Aircraftman Pearson recently suffered from slight inflammation over the insteps. I understand however that this can result from wearing boots which rub or are too tightly laced and is quite common. I can see no justification for discharging Leading Aircraftman Pearson on medical grounds.

Mr. Dodds

Does the Under-Secretary not appreciate the difficulty of the public in understanding why a man with all this disability is kept in the forces and others who can perform tremendous feats of endurance are allowed out? Is he not aware that he will hear more of this case and of the other two to which I referred on Monday night, because it is about time that the public were shown that they were being hoodwinked about many of these matters?

Mr. Ward

This man's medical category is A.4.G.2, which means that he is fit for duty anywhere in the world. He told the doctor only last week that he had had no difficulty with his feet in the Service and that he had no complaints and could not understand what all the fuss was about.

Mr. Speaker

Mr. John Hall.

Mr. Dodds

Is the Minister aware that I have correspondence from the father and from the airman——

Mr. Speaker

Order. Mr. John Hall.