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RECRUITING., Issue 15681, 21 December 1914
TO THE EDITOR. Sir, —Just now all parts of the Empire are being informed of the necessity for strong, vigorous ine'nv for purposes of reinforcing our troo]*3 at the front, and in Xcw Zealand we arc desirous of doing our chare. Wo have already provided sometiling over 10,000, but we know more are required. We know that the reinforcements which left Dunedin on the 14th inst. were something like 400 short out of a total of 700 asked for. Many and various reasons are given to try ana account for this want of interest and enthusiasm on the part of those able to go, yet we ge* but little further ahead. It surely cannot be that everybody has not yet realised the gravity of the situation, because our papers are full of information dealing with every phase of it. Surely wo are not to wait until It is brought home to us by a visitation such as has been experienced this week on the English coast. They tell us that it will be worth at least two army corps to them in England, and should sudh a thing occur in New Zealand it will be worth thousands of men to us. Should such a position arise in New Zealand—and we are not to know when it might arise—there will be no need to hold recruiting meetings such as we are now organising. However, so far as Otago is concerned, the Beeruiting Committee hare been brought into existence in order to assist the Defence authorities In every way possible to pot men, and also to aesist the men themselves by having the fullest information at hand relating to any supposed difficulties or restrictions. _ It has been broiurht before our committee _ that men have been turned down as medically unfit on trivialities, and we, as a committee, asked the authorities to see that uni» formity exists throughout the Dominion, and that it should not be possible for a man rejected here as medically unfit to go North, and get through without any trouble. We have met Dr Falconer sod members of his staff, and gone into the matter with them, and they point out that they are carrying out the tests as laid down by the latest English authorities, and arc not unduly straining them. The men are passed through the hands of a number of doctors, each having to examine certain part or parts, .and when the examination is complete each man ia brought before the P.M.O. or his representative, and - the result of the examination further tested by him. eo that there is no dhanoo of any trivial test taking place. They further point out that what many of the public term trivia.! complaints (such as a bunion, varicose vein, and other such) in ordinary life and under ordinary conditions become very serious matters when put to the test of a strenuous campaign, and a serious menace not only to the men who have them, but to their comrade* In arms, and unless they can be treated quickly and effectively they soon become a burden on the ambulance section, and t here can be no doubt that these men will do less harm if left at home.
Dr iVdoonor "has informed me that varicose veins in almost every instance cnn be made rizht in a fortnight by opera* tirvn, and this will be done entire! v free of cost to any man desirous of enlisting, and where this is the only obstacle to hie acceptance. Hernia also can be operated on successfully, and the authorities are prepared to accent a man otherwise physically fit six months after the operation. Further than this, Dr Falconer is willing to go into every case turned down where any dissatisfaction exists. He will go through the papers again, and if desired will give another thorough examination |if anv man will submit his grievance to j the Recruiting Committee. We cannot expect anything fairer than this, and the committee will be glad to assist in every way possible the medical authorities and the men passing through their bands. ; The directors of the Stock Exchange 1 Proprietary, Ltd., have very kindly given the committee the use of one of the rooms in the Stock Exchange Building, in order, that they may have the use of » thor--1 oughly central office for enrolling men for the reinforcements. The want of a central office has been badly felt in Dunedin, on account of the Defence Office being no far from the centre of the City j but with an office in the Stock Exchange Building no further difficulty need be anticipated !in that direction. We have arranged for I a member of the staff from the Defend Office to be in attendance, and he will I nff-erd the fullest information possible. Wo shall endeavor to have the office men > in the evenings as well ae during the oar, but the exact hours wilt be arranged during this week. It will be open for inquiries a« from December 21. Other matters which the committee feel are noos»- < sary for successful and quick recruiting : are now placed before the Defence Minis- ’ ter, and whatever is arranged will quickly i be placed before the public. ! The committee express the hope that the stigma at present resting on the young men of Otago will toon be removed, and ithat more than the number required will : quickiy bo forthcoming. There can bo no i question of the necessity for more men from every part of the Empire, ana New i Zealand will surely not be found wanting I when the exiftenco of the Empire i» at ■ stake.—l am, etc., j A. Stokes am, , Chairman Otago Recruiting Committee, t December 21
RECRUITING., Issue 15681, 21 December 1914
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