There were many reasons against the adoption of conscription in Canada. The most obvious one, probably, is the risk of withdrawing from an "undermanned" country the men who are actually necessary to carrying on the work of that country. In the House of Commons, two weeks after the announcement of the intention to in-crease Canada's military establishment to 500,000 men, the Prime Minister used these words:
"I realize that 500,000 men is a large force for us to undertake in Canada; and I realize further that the national strength of Canada must be maintained, and that in proceeding with our effort to increase our forces in Canada we must have regard to the agricultural and industrial interests of this country. Canada in all the elements of the national life must be kept strong and we shall have regard to these considerations."
This meant a co-ordination of work between the civil and military agencies, and for that purpose, by an Orderin-Council of September 22nd, 1916, the designation "Director-General of National Service" was substituted for "Director-General of Recruiting." Sir Thomas Tait was appointed to this post "without compensation." Under him were "Directors of Recruiting" appointed to each Military District. The Director of Recruiting was "to have supervision of recruiting within his Military District, and therein to co-ordinate the work of all agencies, civil and military, including regimental institutions connected with recruiting.
"To visit from time to time any locality within his Military District in which recruiting is in operation, and to make himself acquainted with the nature and importance of the various industries (agricultural, manufacturing, mining, lumbering, fishing, or others) which are being carried on in such locality."
"To take into consideration the character and importance of the employment in which would-be recruits may be engaged; and to notify the Commanding Officer whether it would be advisable to enlist them or not."