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Tuesday, 3 May 1932

Mr FRANCIS - On the 29th April, the honorable member for Hindmarsh (Mr. Makin), the honorable member for Hunter (Mr. James), and the honorable member for Hume (Mr.. Collins), referred to the matter of the distribution of surplus and unserviceable military clothing for the relief of those in distressed circumstances.

I replied at the time, setting out the position regarding this matter, and promised to have further inquiries made regarding the points raised by the honorable members. I have now ascertained that there are no surplus stocks of army clothing and equipment, beyond the large quantity already issued, available for distribution. In States other than New South Wales any part-worn and unserviceable clothing' and equipment that becomes available ishanded over free to the State authorities for relief of unemployed. In New South Wales, where the State Government declined to handle the matter, issues are made direct to the following charitable organizations for distribution to unemployed : - The Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Sydney City Mission, City Night Refuge and Soup Kitchen, and the Salvation Army. The Salvation Army has agreed to distribute to country centres portion of the clothing and equipment received, and in making allocations to the above organizations, the District Base Commandant, Sydney, is taking this fact into consideration. The only part-worn and unserviceable clothing, &c, available i? that returned to ordnance depots by troops, but the quantities are not large, and, it is regretted, are not sufficient to provide a distribution to all city and country centres.

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