UK Justice Minister Straw reveals father was WWII C.O.

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Justice Secretary Jack Straw has revealed that his father was imprisoned as a conscientious objector in the Second World War.

Walter Straw’s refusal to fight led to his being jailed in 1939.

The former Home Secretary mentioned his father’s confinement in jails in Wandsworth, South London, and Exeter in a speech to the conference of the Prison Officers Association...

It is not clear how long he spent behind bars but other conscientious objectors were imprisoned for months during the war.

On their release, they were ordered to undertake war-related work that did not involve fighting.

But the stigma of being labelled a ‘conchie’ remained with them. About 60,000 people registered as conscientious objectors at the outbreak of war, with more than 6,000 of them jailed or court-martialled and sentenced to military detention.

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