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Thursday, 24 September 1942

The members of the Women's Union of Service are gravely perturbed by the introduction of a measure into the Constitution of the country whereby de facto widows are placed on the same basis as lawful widows.

We should like to draw your attention to Hansard, pages 1343, 1370, No. 8 - 1508, 1518, 1519, 1529, 1535, 1536, 1537.

This measure aims to countenance irregular unions, therein departing from the spirit of theopening chapter of the Constitution - humbly relying on the blessing of Almighty God - for such legislation simply legalizes and subsidizes immorality.

The members of the Union realize the heavy responsibility under which Government is labouring at present and understand that every new piece of legislation cannot receive the full attention of the Ministry, but as this measure strikes at the very heart of Christian motherhood - British woman's world - we cannot let it pass without making every endeavour to have it annuled.

The " honour of womanhood " and the sanctity of the home is threatened, for if permitted to operate this legislation will result in -

(1)   The prostitution of the divinely ordained marriage for the procreation of children. Unhallowed alliances ("companionate marriage") will, in the event of desertion, take place of precedence to lawful marriage through the allocation of the pension to the de facto widow (so called).

Motherhood will thus be debased and relegated to mere animality.

(2)   Disintegration of the family and the lowering of all moral standards, for without an orderedbackground, children must suffer. They will be deprived of their legitimate " birthright " - honorable parentage and cultural tradition.

(3)   Iniquity. - Law-abiding spinsters of 50 years and over will be penalized by being compelled to contribute towards the support of immorality, through the taxation of then honest labour, though they themselves, as lawabiding citizens, are debarred from sharing in the benefit of good government.

(4)   Degenerate manhood. - Man, being by nature more polygamous than woman, will tend to pass from one woman to another, maybe leaving a lawful wife and family unprovided for. Findinghis responsibilities shouldered by unwise administration, himself undisciplined by moral or legal obligation, will quickly become decadent.

(5)   Abuse of Pension. - Unscrupulous women, doubling up on moneys derived from depravity, will subsequently exploit men in ill-health.

The members of the Women's Union of Service trust the Government will give this matter their earnest consideration while yet there is time to rescind the measure and its inevitable consequences.

Yours faithfully,

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