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Tuesday, 22 September 1942

The CHAIRMAN - Order ! A general discussion on reconstruction is not permissible at this stage in the absence of a specific .item relating to the matter.

Mr BARNARD - I bow to your ruling. I do not desire to discuss the general subject of reconstruction. I merely seek to draw the attention of the Treasurer (Mr. Chifley) to the fact that, whilst his budget speech referred to this subject, no provision is made for it in the Estimates. There is much to be said in favour of creating a special ministry to deal with post-war reconstruction. At any rate, the Government should appoint a body of experts who would devote their whole attention to it. The press reported last week that provision had been made in Great Britain for the erection of 4,000,000 homes for the people and that plans were now being drawn. Whatever be the ministerial direction of the .postwar reconstruction, two things stand out, first, the necessity for hard work, and, secondly, the necessity for the provision of funds. The social security of the people is one of the objectives for which we are fighting. I support what has been said on this subject by the honorable member for Melbourne (Mr. Calwell). The Minister for Social Security (Mr. Holloway) should state the policy of the Government on this matter.

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