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Wednesday, 3 June 1942

Mr BEASLEY (West Sydney) (Minis a.m.]. - I appreciate the motive of the honorable member for PerthMr. Nairn) in submitting this amendment. On humanitarian grounds, strong arguments can be advanced to support it. Approximately 2,500 persons will be involved in the proposal to grant free listeners' licences. On page 67 of the report of the joint committee the following statement appears : -

In regard to the question of free licences to other people, the position is that we extended a general invitation to all organizations and persons interested in radio to tender evidence to us, and as no representations weremade to us in favour of free licences to other than schools and pensioners, we aru unable to express an opinion on the merits of other cases in comparison with the claims of schools and pensioners to the consideration we have recommended.

The department also considers that the field should not be widened at this juncture before the effects of the amendment are properly examined. I urge the honorable member for Perth to be satisfied to allow the matter to be considered by the standing committee, which will recommend adequate methods of policing the proposal.

Mr FRANCIS - Will the committee also give consideration to tubercular soldiers? Mr. BEASLEY.- Yes.

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