MONTREAL (Dec. 16)
The United Jewish Refugee and War Relief Agencies are assisting the 1,700 Jewish aliens of Class B and C interned in Canada, Director Saul Hayes stated to the J.T.A. today, commenting on a London dispatch which quoted reports on internees in Canada received by the Agudath Israel. (See JTA NEWS DEC. 8.) The statement said:
“1. Emigration: The authorities allowed the United Jewish Refugee and War Relief Agencies to conduct a census by means of questionaire. As a result of the information we are now in a position to work on affidavits, visas, permits, transfers of dossiers and all other items of concern in the whole question of the emigration of so many men. The bottleneck in immigration matters is in the Immigration Department of the United States and also in the Consulates of the Department of the Secretary of State. Certain technical grounds are obstacles in the case with the result that we have to use connections with American agencies in order to break down the bottleneck which so far has hindered the emigration problem from being settled.
“2. The U.J.R. & W.R.A. spent several thousands of dollars and is still spending money, providing necessaries, such as cigarettes, toiletries, chocolates, razor blades and other comforts for those who are unable to provide their own.
“3. Education: Arrangements have been made with McGill University to grant matriculation certificates to those who pass the examinations. The United Jewish Refugee and War Relief Agencies have been sending books and are at present engaged in a program in order to see that the young internees will be able to study so that they can take the examinations when they are held.
“4. Recreation: The U.J.R. and W.R.A. has sent books of all kinds to internees, musical instruments, sport goods and other recreational items and articles so that their time could be spent and the morale of the men approved. Plans are now afoot to provide movies at certain stated intervals in the camps.
“5. Payment for Work: The rate of payment for work is based on an international convention. Many of the internees have money which they use to supply their wants from the canteens at each camp. We take care of those who are without funds.
“6. Status: The Prisoner of War status was taken up by us with the authorities, and for some time now the internees are allowed to send mail without the stigmata of ‘Prisoner of War’
“7. The U.J.R. and W.R.A. has been working constantly on all phases of the problem. Its services in answering queries alone involves it in a considerable staff, in extra postage, and in a considerable amount of activity.”