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Friday, 28 June 1946

Mr Bernard Corser (WIDE BAY, QUEENSLAND) r asked the Minister representing the Minister for Social Services, upon notice -

1.   Is it a fact that the Queensland Government offered to administer the Commonwealth employment and unemployment benefits schemes ?

2.   If so, did the Commonwealth reject this offer ?

3.   Has the Commonwealth duplicated the existing organization by establishing labour agencies in about 20 centres throughout the State?

4.   If so, what is the justification for this duplication ?

5.   How many Commonwealth officers are at present engaged in connexion with this particular scheme in Queensland?

0.   Will he take immediate action to elliminate duplication, if such has taken place?

Mr Holloway (MELBOURNE, VICTORIA) (Minister for Labour and National Service) - The Minister for Social Services has supplied the following answers : - 1 and 2. The Queensland Government, viewing the discussion between the Commonwealth and the States in relation to the administration of the Commonwealth employment service and the unemployment and sickness benefits scheme, did put forward a plan to administer these services as agents for the Commonwealth, but the Commonwealth decided that the arrangements proposed would not meet its requirements. 3, 4 and 0. The Commonwealth, as part of the nation-wide network of district employment offices which " are implementing the Government's policy of full employment, and other provisions of the Re-establishment. and Employment Act, has established offices in Brisbane and in twenty provincial centres in Queensland. These offices also participate in the administration of the unemployment and sickness benefits and other social service acts and generally will provide more extensive facilities and 'services than were available from the State offices.

5.   The number of Commonwealth officers employed in the abovementioned offices in Queensland in connexion with the Commonwealth employment service and the unemployment and sickness benefits and other social service schemes- is 312, including 71 at the dispersal centre at Redbank.

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