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Dollars are extremely important and they have a definite value. I also think benefits received in kind have an equivalent value in dollars. By paying the seaman so many dollars on the one hand and paying a soldier so many dollars and so many other benefits having an equivalence in dollars, you may find they equal each other, or one outweighs the other a little more or less.
Mr. WEICHEL. Depending how you use the equivalents. Take a man in the merchant marine without dependents. On the testimony offered here he would average $2,500 a year. Take a private in the Army or a seaman in the Navy without dependents, in domestic service, with $600 a year. Would you call the equivalents—this difference in the Army and Navy-what he received? Would you say it is worth $1,900? In other words, the merchant seaman had his food and quarters, did he not?
Mr. McCANDLESS. Yes.
Mr. WEICHEL. The man in the Army had his food and quarters, did he not?
Mr. McCANDLESS. Yes.
Mr. WEICHEL. In the merchant marine he had to purchase his own clothing?
Mr. McCANDLESS. That is right.
Mr. WEICHEL. So the only difference between the two of them with reference to the equivalents is that a man who was a civilian had to purchase his own clothes. That is the relative difference, the real difference between each of those who has no dependents. Is that right?
Mr. McCANDLESS. That is the only difference insofar as you have stated the facts.
Mr. WEICHEL. In the Navy they purchase their clothes, do they not?
Mr. McCANDLESS. There are other items besides clothing which distinguish between benefits.
Mr. WEICHEL. What are the others on the set-up I just put up to you?
Mr. McCANDLESS. Disability benefits, the GI bill of rights with its various and sundry benefits for members of the armed forces. Another in the hospitalization which is available. I heard only yesterday that the Veterans' Administration is spending seven-eighths of its hospitalization on non-service-connected-disability illnesses and otherwise.
Mr. WEICHEL. That is why those people are receiving that. That is on people who got $50 a month and not $250.
Mr. McCANDLESS. One of the items paid to a member of the armed forces in kind.
Mr. WEICHEL. You are talking now about since their discharge from the service, about receiving hospitalization.
Mr. McCANDLESS. Either in or out of the discharge.
Mr. WEICHEL. When a merchant seaman was in service, or he so considered himself a merchant seaman, is there any provision with reference to the United States Public Health? Do they get treatment at the hospitals, United States Public Health, marine hospitals!
Mr. McCANDLESS. Yes. They get service only so long as reasonable care and attention can bring about a possible cure. When that point is reached
Mr. WEICHEL. How long does anybody get that benefit?
Mr. McCANDLESS. When that point is reached that the person's rehabilitation by hospitalization in which further care and attention will not improve his condition, then his right to hospitalizaton under the Public Health Service according to the law and the rule and regulation is subject to termination.
Mr. WEICHEL. Is that with reference to any injury received in the service?
Mr. McCANDLESS. Yes, whereas in the case of the members of the armed forces whether the injury is the result of direct action or otherwise they are
Mr. WEICHEL. It is not otherwise. It is only if he has no money. Is that right?
Mr. MCCANDLESS. I am speaking of while he is in the service, which I thought was the limit of your present question.
Mr. WEICHEL. Yes.
Mr. McCANDLESS. Then he is entitled to such service as long as it will be beneficial to him and it is not measured upon the standard of whether further attention will effect a further recovery.
Mr. WEICHEL. Then that part of the hospitalization he gets is something which, from what you say, is in the discretion of the United States Public Health Service?
Mr. McCANDLESS. I think within the provisions
Mr. WEICHEL. The law does not cut him off, does it? I do not think it does.
Mr. McCANDLESS. I think insofar as the law as given to the Public Health Service is concerned giving them a right to exercise discretion it does.
Mr. BONNER. Is there not some domiciliary care, a home you have for disabled seamen, other than hospitals?
Mr. MoCANDLESS. We had during the war an arrangement with the United Seamen's Service, I believe it was, where we had provisions made for rest and rehabilitation of seamen who would come in from a voyage, probably shipwrecked, and they would have an opportunity to sort of get themselves together for a relatively short time.
Mr: BONNER. That is not continued now?
Mr. BONNER. One other thing I am interested in is the discussion which took place at the time you referred to the earlier stages of the war with respect to merchant seamen on a Government-owned ship and on a privately owned ship, and their not wanting to be inducted under the National Defense Act. You say that discussion took place?
Mr. McCANDLESS. am so informed.
Mr. BONNER. Is there somebody yet with the Maritime Commission who at present remember when those discussions took place and who was present?
Mr. MOCANDLESS. I hope there is someone present who may have some direct information on it. If there is I would try to see they are made available to the committee.
Mr. BONNER. There are records in the Maritime Commission of the discussion, are there not?
Mr. McCANDLESS. I understand so. As I recall it, Mr. Godfrey Butler testified at the hearings last year on this with regard to that particular point.
Mr. BONNER. This particular thing?
Mr. McCANDLESS. I rather think so. If I had the index I might be able to tell you.
Mr. BONNER. I do not want to take up additional time.
Mr. BONNER. I would like if it is possible to get a transcript of that conference and put it in the record.
Mr. McCANDLESS. In one of the subcommittee hearings it may have been mentioned.
Mr. BONNER. It was a conference with representatives of the merchant seamen. It was someone with authority to ask that all merchant seamen be deferred.
Mr. McCANDLESS. Might I suggest to the Congressman I do not think he means the merchant seaman meant he wanted to be left out of the national defense. He wanted to be left out of incorporation into the armed forces, whereas they played a definite part in the national defense as civilians.
Mr. BONNER. Yes.
Mr. WEICHEL. The statement you made with reference to merchant seamen, even though they are off 5 or 6 months, they are still merchant seamen and entitled by law to the United States Public Health Service treatment, physician, hospital service. From your testimony it would seem that at a certain point in the United States Health Service they say they have had reasonable treatment and they throw them out in the street. Do they not have an out-patient treatment and continue to give these men treatment? If they do not we should have the United States Public Health Service up here because these people who are injured in the service, or these people who are entitled to hospitalization under the law, should be continued. I do not think the law cuts them off so it is being badly administered. We would like to know about it so we can put the people on their toes who are supposed to administer it and take care of these people.
Mr. McCANDLESS. I do not think the Public Health Service are neglecting the obligation imposed upon them. I think they have hospitalization and they do have out-patient care. The point I wish to make—and if I did not make it clear may I do so now—is that if hospitalization or medical care has got the individual as far as such reasonable caré can, he is not longer, as I understand it, entitled to hospitalization.
At the time medical care, either hospitalization or out-patient, no longer has a reasonable likelihood of improving his condition, it is my understanding he is then no longer entitled to Public Health Service care.
Mr. WEICHEL. The law gives him treatment as long as he needs it. There is nothing in the law saying what you are saying.
Mr. McCANDLESS. I think you will find what I am saying will probably be supported, Mr. Weichel. At least I am assuming it will be, and I believe it will.
Mr. WEICHEL. What I am trying to find out is that if a man is injured as a merchant seaman in service, certainly there is no law to cut him off from treatment. If that is so the law should be changed. He should have treatment. If the United States Public Health Service is not giving it to him we ought to find out about it.
Mr. McCANDLESS. I think we are in accord on that, Mr. Weichel. I think that is one of the purposes of this bill, to shorten up any gap there may be between the situation I suggested and this situation you have in mind.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. Are there further questions? Mr. ALLEN. Who prepared the redraft which puts this H. R. 476 in its present form?
Mr. McCANDLESS. That was prepared by the subcommittee, by Congressman Peterson.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. Gentlemen, unless there are some further questions pertaining to the immediate issue we will discontinue this testimony.
You will have the statement of the Maritime Commission ready as soon as practicable ?
Mr. McCANDLESS. Yes, sir; Mr. Chairman.
May I ask a question of the other governmental agencies present? I want to know if your statements are ready.
Mr. William McCauley, Director, Bureau of Compensation? Mr. McCAULEY. We have no formal statement prepared as yet.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. Will you have one prepared in a short time?
Mr. McCAULEY. Yes.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. The Social Security Administration, Mr. Wilbur Cohen. Have you a statement prepared yet?
Mr. COHEN. Yes, sir.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. Capt. Edward R. Durgin, of the Navy Department. Have you a prepared statement?
Captain DURGIN. No prepared statement. I have a statement I can make to you. That is the Bureau of Personnel and not the Navy Department. There is somebody else representing the Navy Department.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. Coast and Geodetic Survey, Commander Bond.
Commander Bond. I shall be ready in a matter of days, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. BRADLEY of California. In order that the committee may have the benefit of these letters which have just come in so they can read
them in the transcript of testimony, I will read two letters which have just been received.
The first is from the Merchant Marine Veterans' Association of the United States, February 17, 1947:
DEAR MR. BRADLEY: As you know, a bill extending certain benefits to men who served in the merchant marine during World War II, will be heard by your committee on February 18.
One of the most confused issues in this bill is the question of pay rates of merchant seamen. Many persons quote fantastic rates of a thousand a month paid cooks and messroom attendants. They usually have heard someone else mention such rates but they have no factual data. Therefore, we feel certain that you will be interested in the attached tables which contain data this association stands ready to prove to your satisfaction. Sincerely yours,
LEWIS DOYLE, National Commander. I have here another letter just received from the War Department, dated February 18, 1947:
DEAR MR. BRADLEY: The War Department has carefully considered H. R. 476, Eightieth Congress, a bill to provide aid for the readjustment in civilian life of those persons who rendered wartime service in the United States merchant marine, and to provide aid for their families.
The purpose of the bill is to provide comprehensive gratuitous benefits for persons who served in the United States merchant marine, including the United States Army Transport Service, during the time December 7, 1941 and prior to March 2, 1946, and for service prior to December 1941, if, in the discretion of the Chairman of the Maritime Commission, such service was in an area which was subjected to hazards commensurate to those determined as adequate to constitute a war zone or danger zone subesquent to December 7, 1941. The principal benefits proposed are as follows:
1. Education and training for wartime-service seamen on practically the same basis and to the same extent as provided for veterans by Public Law 346, Seventy-eighth Congress, the Servicemen's Readjustment Act of 1944 (commonly known as the GI bill of rights).
2. Certain employment and reemployment rights for wartime-service seamen.
3. Medical, surgical, and dental treatment and hospitalization for wartimeservice seamen at hospitals and other stations of the Public Health Service for disabilities.
4. Disability benefits for wartime-service seamen and death benefits for their dependents under the act of September 7, 1916, as amended (39 Stat. 742: 5 U. S. C., ch. 15, sec. 751, and the following), under the conditions therein described and herein modified.
5. Vocational training and rehabilitation for wartime-service seamen.
The proposed legislation is similar to H. R. 2346, Seventy-ninth Congress, upon which the War Department rendered a report to the Chairman, Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, under date of October 17, 1945, recommending that the proposed legislation be not favorably considered.
The benefits proposed by this and similar legislation are generally the same as those provided for veterans of the armed forces.
The War Department is, of course, aware that the contribution of the merchant marine in the present war was immeasurable, as is that of millions of other civilian men and women, including civilans employed in the United States Army Transport Service (Transportation Corps, Army Service Forces).
The civilian status of the merchant marine has been preserved during the present war. Merger with the military or naval estabilshment was carefully avoided. The War Department is not aware of any effort, during the present war, by members of the merchant marine, or their representatives, to have military or naval status conferred upon them with the liabilities, privileges, and emoluments flowing from such status. Rather, they have apparently chosen to enjoy the usual rights of civilians, to introduce contracts of employment, and to have rights and privileges under numerous statutes and general maritime law specifically designed to meet the needs of seamen in private employ. ment, plus the higher pay, liberal bonuses, and free insurance provided for them during the emergency.