CPS Unit No. 65, a Mental Hospital unit planned for Utica, New York, did not open due to fierce opposition from labor and veterans groups.
General Hershey had authorized creation of a unit of twenty-five men to open at the state mental hospital in Utica, New York after discussions with the state commissioner of mental hygiene. However, after the announcement on November 5, 1942, hospital employees and veterans groups in Utica and in Ogdensburg, along with the Association of State Civil Service Employees fiercely criticized the plan. The unions feared the unit would displace paid employees and depress wages, even though staffs were overburdened because of staff shortages. Within a month, “the opposition forced Selective Service and the Department of Mental Hygiene to abandon the project”. (Robinson p. 195)
A few months later, when Governor Thomas Dewey asked Hershey for help from conscientious objectors to relieve acute shortage of five thousand staff members in state mental hospitals, General Hershey reminded him of the Utica experience, and suggested that he first obtain concurrence from labor and veterans groups.
Utica, New York, United States
See Mitchell Robinson, “Men of Peace in a World at War: Civilian Public Service in New York State, 1941-1946”, New York History 78:2 (April 1997): 174-210.