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Wednesday, 6 May 1942

Mr Holt t asked the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice -

1.   How many men hold exemptions from military service on the ground that they are waterside workers (a) at the port of Sydney, and (6) at the port of Melbourne?

2.   How many men classified as waterside workers and engaged as such were working at (a) the port of Sydney, and (i) the port of Melbourne, on Wednesday, the 22nd April, Thursday, the 23rd April, and Friday, the 24th April, 1942, respectively?

Mr Ward - The answers to the honorable member's questions are as follows : -

1.   All men 25 years and over employed as coal-lumpers, stevedores and wharf labourers are reserved from military service under the

Schedule of Reserved Occupations and Industrial Priorities. As such men are registered for military service in their own residential areas, and as the granting of individual exemptions is also dependent on the group or class to which the men, when called up, belong, it would be necessary to refer to a largenumber of Area Man-power Officers to ascertain the number of men holding exemptions.

2.   The numbers of men engaged as watersideworkers and working as such at the ports ot Sydney and Melbourne on the dates in question were: -

The registration of waterside workers is now undertaken by the newly constituted Stevedoring Industry Commission, which is charged with the general responsibility of ensuring that waterside work and stevedoring operations are carried on with the utmost efficiency.

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