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Thursday, 28 May 1942

Mr HOLLOWAY (Melbourne PortsMinister for Social Services and Minister for Health) .- -Yesterday, the honorable member for Bourke (Mr. Blackburn) asked me a question concerning certain persons who have lost their employment as the result of government action. The matter was also mentioned in an article in the Sydney Daily Telegraph, from which it might be inferred that persons displaced from their employment as the result of government policy had to be out of work for six weeks before they could obtain compensation. I wish to correct that impression. Persons who lose their employment in these circumstances may obtain compensation after fourteen days. A married man is entitled to £2 a week, plus £1 5s. a week in respect of his wife and 5s. a week in respect of his first child. Single men, and persons between the ages of sixteen and twenty-one years living away from home, are entitled to payment of £1 5s. a week. Such persons who reside at home are entitled to 17s. 6d. a week. It is not provided that persons must be out of work for six weeks before payment can be made, although the department desires to confine payments, as far as practicable, to monthly periods, because of the difficulty of providing clerical assistance. Many departments are hard pressed to-day to get through the work that has to be done. The regulations provide that the possession of £50 by a single man and £100 by a married man would be a disqualification for this compensation. The idea is that if they have this money it will enable them to tide themselves over the period for which they are out of employment. I make it clear, however, that a person who is displaced from his employment can obtain compensation immediately if he is in need of it.

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