IN every part of the United States, various movements are under way to alleviate distress among scientific and technical men during the present unparalleled unemployment crisis. In the New York metropolitan area, local sections of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, and other bodies have established the Provisional Engineers Committee on Unemployment. The chemical societies have adopted similar measures. An honorary unemployment committee has been formed, the chief function of which is to compile a register of those seeking work, and to undertake a very thorough canvass of industrial firms, etc., for suitable openings. A further important step has been taken at Columbia University, where classes in the engineering department have been opened free to all accredited unemployed professional engineers, the number being limited merely by the size of the lecture halls. A certificate is necessary showing status and confirming that the holder is out of work through no fault of his own. The principal purpose is, says Dean Barker, to preserve the morale of those skilled men during a period of enforced idleness It is of course recognised that these various schemes are only palliative in the face of immediate necessity. They do not touch the great fundamentals of the problem. To achieve this far greater purpose it will be urgently necessary to contemplate some form of national unemployment insurance or some nationwide plan on the lines of the Swope or Rochester or like suggestion.