Letter to the Director, Selective Service System, on Deferment of farm Workers.
Dear General Hershey:
I have studied Defense Manpower Policy Number 6 which Dr. John R. Steelman, the Acting Director of the Office of Defense Mobilization, has called to my attention.
I am in complete accord with the decision of the Director of Defense Mobilization that continued emphasis should be given to the policy formulated by the Congress and set forth in more detail in regulations which I have issued, providing for classifying in a deferred class registrants whose activities are necessary to the maintenance of the production of substantial quantities of agricultural commodities for market, and who meet the other criteria of your regulations for deferment.
I feel that this policy should be carried out in a manner consistent with adherence to the policy of universal liability for service for all men between the ages of 18½ and 26.
In reading the policy I am happy to note that the Selective Service System is going to work with the State Agricultural Mobilization Committees in developing on a state basis methods for rating the productive level of farms for the purpose of determining where farm production would be hurt the most by loss of manpower to the armed forces. I feel that this represents a very constructive step. I will look forward to receiving a report, through Dr. Steelman, as to the progress made in implementing this particular portion of the policy.
I recognize, of course, that Selective Service alone cannot solve the farm manpower problem. All of the departments and agencies that have been given specific responsibilities under Manpower Policy No. 6 must discharge those responsibilities in an effective manner if we are to achieve the objectives of the policy.
HARRY S. TRUMAN
[Major General Lewis B. Hershey, Director, Selective Service System, Washington, D.C.]
Note: See also Items 185, 186.
Harry S. Truman, Letter to the Director, Selective Service System, on Deferment of farm Workers. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/231089