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sions of section 9 of the aforementioned act, in accordance with the regulations promulgated by The National Archives Council under the provisions of said act. Respectfully submitted to the Senate and House of Representatives.
A. J. ELLIOTT, Chairman,
B. W. GEARHART,
ALBEN W. BARKLEY,
MOBILIZATION OF CIVILIAN MANPOWER
JANUARY 24, 1945.-Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the
state of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mr. May, from the Committee on Military Affairs, submitted the
[To accompany H. R. 1752)
The Committee on Military Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 1752) to amend the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940, and for other purposes, having considered the same, reports favorably thereon without amendment and recommend that the bill do pass.
The purpose of the bill is to provide means of meeting during wartime the manpower requirements in civilian activities, occupations, and endeavors found essential to the war effort. On January 6, 1945, there was referred to the committee a bill (H. R. 1119) having the same purpose. Hearings were held by the committee on that bill. After considering numerous amendments thereto, the committee requested the chairman to introduce a bill embodying the provisions of H. R. 1119 as so amended. That was done on January 24, 1945, and it is that bill (H. R. 1752) which is herewith reported.
NEED FOR LEGISLATION
At the opening of this session of Congress the President recommended the adoption of a national service act "for the total mobilization of all our human resources for the prosecution of the war.” He urged that this be done “at the earliest possible moment."
Last week the President, in a letter to the chairman of the committee, renewed his recommendation. He said:
I am familiar with the provisions of H. R. 1119, on which hearings are now being held before your committee. While this bill is not a complete national service law, it will go far to secure the effective employment in the war effort of all registrants under the selective-service law between the ages of 18 and 45.
While there may be some difference of opinion on the details of the bill, prompt action now is much more important in the war effort than the perfecting of detail.
The President enclosed a joint letter to him from the Chief of Naval Operations and the Chief of Staff of the Army, copy of which is set
forth in full at the end of this report. These officers, directly responsible for the conduct of military operations, voiced the urgent necessity for immediate actionto provide the necessary manpower to increase the production of critical items of munitions, accelerate ship construction, and effect the rapid repair of damaged vessels.
They reported that in the next 6 months the Army and Navy will require 900,000 additional men. They estimated that in the same period 700,000 industrial workers must be added to the force working on munitions production and supporting industries. They added that "new devices and weapons in production and ready for production require additional facilities and civilian labor.” They concluded their appeal with the statement:
You are initmately familiar, Mr. President, with the great importance of regaining the offensive on the western front and pressing it, together with operations against the Japanese, with constantly increasing intensity in the months to come. To this end, therefore, we feel that the United States should make every conceivable effort to enable the armed forces to carry out your instructions.
The Government officials responsible for the production of war supplies—the Under Secretary
of the Navy, the Under Secretary of War, and the Chairman of the War Production Board—while expressing the belief that the full solution to the manpower problem would require enactment of a comprehensive national service law, were unanimous in stating that enactment into law of the basic principles embodied in H. R. 1119 was essential to provide immediate relief and was a long and a good step in the right direction.
The basic principles of H. R. 1119 were also strongly endorsed by the Chief of Production for the Army Air Forces, the Acting Chairman of the War Manpower Commission, the War Food Administrator, the representative for the Selective Service System, and the representative of the American Farm Bureau Federation.
Spokesmen for the War Production Board and for the Army and the Navy declared that, without Government authority to draw more workers into war plants, they could not meet military requirements. Production schedules since October have gone up sharply in a number of critical items for both the Army and the Navy. Perhaps foremost among these is ammunition for heavy artillery, mortars, and small arms. Heavy expenditure in ammunition saves lives and quickens our offensive.
Other pressing requirements include tanks, heavy trucks, tires, radar, ship construction and repair, rockets, field wire, and cotton duck. One of the most pressing requirements is for foundry workers to turn out key items, such as housings for truck axles.
These shortages are real and immediate. They are bottlenecks that must be broken. The forward sweep of the war into enemy territory cannot await the outcome of debate as to past action or omission to act, but must press constantly and increasingly on. We cannot allow the commissioning of a new warship to be held up for lack of a single item, such as radar. And we cannot jeopardize the life of one soldier or one sailor by sending him into combat without the fullest protection that we know how to give him in the way of weapons and equipment.
The manpower problem cannot be measured alone in terms of the total number of workers needed today in war plants. The problem today is primarily one of spot shortages, and shortages, though overcome today, will show up tomorrow in other places, as shifts in the course of the war, changes in military strategy, and the development of new weapons (by the Allies and by the enemy) compel swift and radical changes in war output.
Moreover, the armed forces require 900,000 additional men during the first half of 1945. We must send our fighting men the best possible reinforcements. And the places of these men in industry will also have to be filled.
As the war reaches its climax and more and more men are drawn into the armed forces, our labor supply grows tighter. The committee believes that its bill will go a long way toward obtaining the fullest utilization of this tight supply and toward making manpower as flexible as possible with a minimum of individual hardship or displacement.
The committee has studied this problem closely during the last 3 years. It recognizes the urgency of the present situation and the need for speed. The bill reported will provide immediate action to increase the labor supply in war industry. The committee believes that it merits immediate consideration and prompt passage.
The measure is designed, as far as possible, to encourage those of draft age who are neither in uniform nor in war industry to transfer voluntarily into essential work without formal order from their local boards. We believe that the mandatory provisions of the legislation will be invoked only rarely; that the presence of the law on the statute books will in itself result in an immediate increase in the labor available at war plants. We believe that it will also help to hold men on their jobs, thus reducing wasteful turn-over.
The passage of such a law will have a still wider effect. To the millions already employed in essential war work, just as to the millions already in the Army and Navy throughout the world, it will be a sign to strengthen their spirit and increase their confidence in the cause for which they labor and fight. It will show to them, and to our allies, that neither the flurry of volunteer recruitment since this measure was first proposed nor the sweeping Russian offensive in eastern Germany has deterred the American people from taking decisive action to finish the war promptly and at the least cost to human life.
The Nation has a proud record of production during 3 years of war, a record built by the teamwork of sabor and management and agriculture. But we cannot stop here. Our military leaders all urge that legislation is needed to assure meeting our supply requirements.
The invasion of France and the Philippines set us to a course on which we cannot falter. Prior to these invasions, the decision as to When we should go forward with these great engagements was ours. If the war equipment was not ready, we could even delay the day or the month of attack.
But now we have committed our armed forces to battle on two sides of the globe. D-day tied our battle lines to our production lines.
We must marshal our full strength and resources to keep the battle lines moving forward. It is unthinkable that we give the men who are fighting and dying for us less than our full support.
We must produce the weapons they need, in the quantities indicated, and on time. If we fail, our young men pay with their lives.
H. Repts., 79–1, vol. 1
DETAILED EXPLANATION OF THE BILL
Section 1 of the bill adds a new subsection (n) to section 5 of the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940, as amended.
Section 5 (n) (1) imposes upon every registrant between the ages of 18 and 45, who is not on active duty in the armed forces or exempted or deferred under sections 5 (c) (1) and (d) of the act certain elected and other officials and certain religious personnel), a liability to perform work in an activity in war production, or in support of the national health, safety, or interest, or in an agricultural occupation or endeavor essential to the war effort, designated by the Director of War Mobilization and Reconversion (or by an agency named by him).
Other paragraphs of section 5 (n) give effect to this liability to work in the war effort in two ways.
First. Registrants so liable to work who are now or hereafter employed in a designated activity, occupation, or endeavor are "frozen" in their jobs. That is, section 5 (n) (2) imposes on such registrants a duty not to voluntarily discontinue such employment unless their local boards find it is in the best interest of the war effort for them to leave such employment.
Second. If the Director of War Mobilization and Reconversion certifies under section 5 (n) (3), (after consultation with representatives of labor, management, agriculture, and Government) that, in any area, the manpower requirements in a designated activity, occupation, or endeavor have not been met by such “freezing” or by voluntary recruiting by labor, industry, management, and Government, registrants so liable to work (to be drawn from categories of such registrants prepared by the Director of Selective Service, which categories may, as the Director determines fair and equitable, not include veterans) may under section 5 (n) (4) be requested by their local boards to become employed in a designated activity, occupation, or endeavor, and, if within a certain time such manpower requirements are not met by action taken pursuant to such requests, such registrants may be ordered by their local boards to make application for employment in a designated activity, occupation, or endeavor and to enter upon such employment when accepted therefor. Any such order must give to registrants a reasonable choice of employers for whom to work.
Every registrant so liable to work has a right, if “frozen” in a job under section 5 (n) (2), to apply for transfer to other employment; or if ordered to take a job under section 5 (n) (4) (C), to apply for a revocation or modification of such order, with rights of appeal from any denial of such an application.
For a violation of a duty imposed by section 5 (n) (either the duty to stay on a job in which “frozen” or the duty to obey an order to take a new job), a registrant, if such violation is found to be willful, is subject to the same fine and imprisonment provided for violation of an induction order under the Selective Training and Service Act. However, section 4 of the bill provides certain specific defenses to a registrant charged with such violation, including the defense that the denial of his application to transfer to other employment or to obtain a revocation or modification of the order to take a certain job was not based upon a fair consideration of his application.
Under the act as it is now written, registrants who are ordered to submit to induction into the armed forces may not refuse and defend