Charles Gavan Power (Minister of National Defence; Minister of National Defence for Air; Minister of National Defence for Air and Associate Minister of National Defence)
Hon. C. G. POWER (Acting Minister of National Defence):
Mr. Speaker, I should like to make an announcement with respect to the use of services of veterans of the great war.
On May 23 the late Hon. Norman Rogers said in the house:
I wish to advise the house that it has been decided to establish immediately a force to be known as the "veterans home guard" for the more adequate protection of military property or for any other purposes that may be found necessary in Canada. The force at the outset shall consist of twelve companies. . . . Each company shall be in command of an officer of the rank of major and shall consist of 250 all ranks. They shall receive pay and allowances according to the rates at present in force for the Canadian active service force.
The district officer commanding shall in each case be responsible for the organization of any of such companies within his district.
On June 7, Mr. Rogers, referring to the veterans home guard, said in addition there will be reserve companies of veterans which will be attached to the non-permanent active militia units for training purposes.
Pursuant to these statements of Mr. Rogers, order in council P.C. 2545 establishes what is known as the veterans home guard, which includes both of the forces above mentioned in Mr. Rogers' two statements.
In the order in council the two forces are jointly described as the veterans home guard and are divided into, first, infantry companies of the Canadian active service force (the veterans home guard referred to in Mr. Rogers' statement of May 23) and, secondly, infantry reserve companies (the reserve companies of veterans referred to in Mr. Rogers' statement of June 7).
The infantry companies, C.A.S.F., are already being recruited and members of this unit, apart from the fact that they are recruited for home service only are, as Mr. Rogers stated, on the same basis in respect of pay and allowances as the Canadian active service force.
The infantiy reserve companies will not be on a full time basis as is the case with the infantry companies, C.A.S.F., but will be trained at regular specified intervals and are to be on call for emergency service. They are to be attached to infantry units of the nonpermanent active militia. They are to be officered by veteran, militia and reserve officers. They are to be permitted to wear
Commonwealth Air Training
a distinctive armband and will be sworn in and taken on the militia strength for home guard duty only and not for duty outside of Canada. They will be given militia rates of pay for time spent in training and will not be placed on Canadian active service force pay and allowances.
An opportunity for several thousand veterans to serve in this capacity will be afforded, and instructions are being issued at once to district officers commanding to commence recruiting as soon as administrative arrangements can be completed.
The enabling order in council was prepared and signed last week by the late Hon. Norman Rogers for submission to council. This normally would have been considered on Monday last. It was approved by privy council yesterday.
Subtopic: VETERANS HOME GUARD
Sub-subtopic: ORGANIZATION OF INFANTRY COMPANIES, C.A.S.F., AND INFANTRY RESERVE COMPANIES