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Notice given 30 January 2003

1142  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Is there an established process by which Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel who are deemed to be medically unfit may be redeployed to civilian positions within the department; if so, are there any guidelines or administrative procedures that detail how the process is carried out and, if so, can a copy of these guidelines be provided.

(2) Does this process in any way restrict the employment of former ADF personnel in civilian functions in the department; if so, under what circumstances might such restrictions occur.

1143  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) (a) How many legal actions have been commenced, to date, in relation to the HMAS Voyager /HMAS Melbourne collision; and (b) how many claims have been settled out of court.

(2) For each year since 1985: (a) how many claims were settled; and (b) on average, how many days before the trial commenced were the cases settled.

(3) How many legal actions commenced in relation to the collision have not yet been settled or mediated or had a judgment given.

(4) In each year since 1985: (a) how many requests have been made under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act to the department for information on personal files by persons with claims relating to the collision (or their lawyers); and (b) how many of the requests have been granted.

(5) Has the department refused some FOI requests relating to the collision; if so, how many and in what years.

(6) Did the department refuse, at some point in the 1990s, FOI requests made by persons with claims relating to the collision (or their lawyers) insisting that the request be made instead to the department’s external lawyers.

(7) Has the Commonwealth destroyed any documents from personal files by persons with claims relating to the collision.