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Friday, 8 May 1942

Mr RYAN (Flinders) .- I have yet to be convinced that something cannot be done to relax the provisions relating to permissible income. The contentions of the Minister for Social Services (Mr. Holloway) are perfectly valid. I realize that if the permissible income of 12s. 6d. a week be increased, the number of pensioners would be increased, and that is undesirable. But the Government, because of the acute shortage of labour, must encourage pensioners ' to seek employment in various occupations. Working in factories, some of them might earn the basic wage whilst others might receive £1 .a week for doing odd jobs. However, pensioners are not encouraged to seek employment, because they realize that if their earnings over a period of twelve months exceed an average of 12s. 6d. a week, their pension will be affected. It should be possible for the department to grant to pensioners now on the roll a certificate of clearance for the purpose of permitting them to earn what they can over and above the pension. This proposal would not increase the number of pensioners, but would enable them to do many useful jobs in the community. I urge the Minister to reconsider the clause.

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