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Friday, 2 December 1938

Mr Street t. - On the 1st December, the honorable member for West Sydney (Mr. Beasley) asked the following questions, upon notice : -

1.   Is the department advertising for 77 telegraphists to join the naval land wireless service at Darwin and Canberra?

2.   Are there insufficient naval extelegraphists to fill the positions?

3.   Is the telegraphic work at the two stations of an automatic or a manipulative nature ?

4.   Will he consider equipping these stations in the same way as coastal radio stations?

5.   Will he ensure, as far as is possible, that only naval ex-servicemen or members of the Royal Australian Naval Volunteer Reserve, or men employed on sea-going vessels, are employed at the two stations? (i. What tropical allowance is to be paid to a telegraphist stationed at Darwin?

I am now in a position to inform the honorable member as follows: -

1.   Yes.

2.   Enrolment is not confined to extelegraphists. It includes also ratings volunteering to transfer fromthe active list.

3.   Telegraphic work at the two stations will be both hand operated and automatic.

4.   The functions of these stations bear little resemblance to those ofcoastal stations and the technical equipment has been decided on by the Naval authorities to meet Naval requirements.

5.   Enrolments are to be made only from members or ex-members of the active (seagoing) list.

6.   No tropical allowance is to be paid to ratings stationed at Darwin, but a district allowance is to be paid at the rates applicable to other forces in that area, namely, married members £100 per annum, single members £80 per annum.

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