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War Economy

Women for the Armed Forces

Women for the Armed Forces

Recruitment of women for the armed forces did not reach substantial numbers until August 1941, when six hundred women were serving. The numbers then gradually increased until a peak figure of 8700 was reached in August 1943. Thereafter women were gradually released, but in November 1945 three and a half thousand women were still serving.

Participation of women in the services released men for more active armed service, just as the entry of women into industry released men for tougher industrial assignments and for the armed forces. In the main, those women whose home ties were light enough to permit them to participate actively in the war effort did so by voluntarily replacing men in paid jobs which had been depleted of labour by recruitment for the forces.