After opening the debate at the start of June on introducing compulsory military service, the States were expected to resume discussions at a sitting this week. It seems, however, that the Defence Committee, which has been charged with drawing up the new law, is not yet ready. As a result, the States will now sit in early July to consider proposals.
In the meantime, it’s clear that Jersey’s labour market is already changing in response to the wartime departure of men. The situation was underlined this week by the opening in St Helier of a new Female Labour Employment Bureau. The bureau’s mission is matching women who are willing and able to work with organisations that have lost men to military service. Potential employees and employers can register with the bureau, which charges a small fee to cover its running costs.
Any women finding work through the bureau will not be the first to take on men’s roles in Jersey however. The recent appointment of female ‘postmen’ has attracted widespread attention. The first, Miss Lillian Smith, started delivering letters in the Georgetown and Havre des Pas area last week.
A/E/3 contains comprehensive correspondence on Jersey’s Military Service Act.