Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    
Thursday, 10 September 1942

Sir Charles Marr (PARKES, NEW SOUTH WALES) asked the Minister for the Army, upon notice -

I preface my question by stating that when a large body of the Australian Imperial Force returned to Australia, certain commanding officers instructed that the word " Australia " was to be removed from their uniform. In some cases the men declined to do so and therewas a great outcry. 'Certain men were crimed and fined. 1 would ask the Minister whether he will give favorable consideration to reviewing these penalties?

Mr Forde - I desire to inform the honorable member that on the 22nd May, 1942, a General RoutineOrder A.38 was issued by the Commander-in-Chief, directing that " Australia " shoulder titles were not to be worn by members of the forces within Australia and its territories. On the 24th July, 1942, that order was cancelled by General Routine Order A.252, which provided that all members of the Australian Imperial Force, whether serving with Citizen Force units or otherwise, will wear "Australia" shoulder titles on both shoulders when in uniform within and outside Australia. While the original general routine order was in force, several cases occurred of soldiers deliberately disobeying commands issued to them pursuant to that general routine order to remove their "Australia " shoulder titles, and disciplinary action was taken against those soldiers, after every opportunity had first been given to them to comply with the command. Their offence was the failure to obey a lawful command, an offence which the honorable member, as a military man, will appreciate strikes at the very root of discipline. The mere fact that an order is subsequently cancelled does not in any way excuse disobedience. It would not be fair to the majority of the unit if such disobedience were to be condoned and the efficiency of the Army would suffer. Consequently, no remission of penalties imposed in such cases can properly be made.

Acquisition of Homes at Townsville and Bowen.

Mr Martens s asked the Minister for the Army, upon notice -

Is the Minister in a position to say when compensation will be paid for homes taken over in Townsville and Bowen?

Mr Forde - I stated yesterday that after the entry of Japan into the war there was an 'immediate increase in the requirements of the various services. The volume of work that these urgent requirements imposed on the Hirings Service temporarily proved beyond the capacity of the existing establishments. Action was quickly put in hand to remedy. The establishments have now been enlarged and more efficient machinery exists to deal with this matter. The result of this is shown in the rapid decrease in the number of outstanding claims. On the 31st July, 350 claims were outstanding in Queensland, and on the 31st August, only 100 - a decrease of 250. Urgent action is proceeding to reduce this number and complete a settlement in all cases with the greatest possible expedition.

Suggest corrections