HC Deb 16 June 1954 vol 528 cc144-5W
52. Mr. Driberg

asked the Under-Secretary of State for Air if he is aware that 4114504 Senior Aircraftman Jukes, M.E., Royal Air Force, Ismailia, has been refused permission by his commanding officer to communicate with his Member of Parliament; if he will inform this officer of the principle laid down by successive Governments that every Service man has an absolute right to communicate with a Member of Parliament, without permission, on any subject, including Service matters; and that it is an infringement of this principle to require Service men to apply for permission so to communicate.

Mr. Ward

There are recognised Service channels through which men and women of the Royal Air Force can take up their problems with higher authority. Nevertheless, it is a well-established practice that Service men are free to write to their Member of Parliament if they so wish, without seeking permission from their commanding officer, provided there is no breach of security. It is clear that in this case there was a misunderstanding and we are reminding commanding officers of the true position.

Forward to