asked the Secretary of State for Defence which of the proposals in the Seebohm naval welfare committee report are not the basis of current practice; and if there are plans for changes which do not follow recommendations of the report.
Financial and manpower constraints and the need to make best use of existing staff have meant that professionally trained social workers have had to be introduced more gradually and in somewhat smaller numbers than envisaged in the Seebohm report, and a few posts are filled by naval personnel who hold the certificate of qualification in social work. An inflexible six-month limit on separation between naval personnel and their families is operationally unacceptable, although in practice only a small proportion of Royal Navy personnel have exceeded this. With minor exceptions the other proposals of the report are the basis of current practice. The requirement for professionally qualified naval personnel is currently being studied.