The States have been discussing whether young women should be leaving Jersey to undertake war work in the UK. With the impending Military Service Act set to reduce the number of men in the island even further through conscription, some Members demanded that local women who are born and raised on Jersey farms should be prevented from leaving for overseas work.
Questions were principally directed towards John Pinel, the Constable of St Helier. He was instrumental in setting up the scheme that recruited local women for the UK munitions industry, while its administration took place in the Town Hall.
Responding, the Constable assured the Assembly that 90 percent of those applying to join the scheme came from shop roles and therefore lacked the agricultural knowledge and experience demanded by farmers. What’s more, he added, if local famers offered better wages and more comfortable living conditions then no local women would want to leave for overseas work.
Nevertheless, it was agreed that only no person presently employed in the local agricultural industry would be accepted on the munitions work scheme. The Constable would place a reminder on any advertising notices.
A/D1/W6 contains correspondence between the Lieutenant Governor and UK Board of Agriculture and Fisheries over resistance to plans for recruiting women workers from Jersey.