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Thursday, 11 July 1946

Mr WHITE (Balaclava) .- 1 should like the Minister (Mr. Calwell) to state clearly whether it is proposed to ensure that preference in employment shall be given to ex-servicemen. The Minister said that there was no doubt of this, but, with due respect to him, I say that there is considerable doubt. It is my belief that the section of the Repatriation Act which gave preference was repealed by section 22 of the Reestablishment and Employment Act.

Mr Calwell -. - There is a' substitute provision for that section.

Mr.- WHITE.-This point- should be properly considered, 'and if there is any doubt the Minister should accept an amendment which I propose 'to move as an additional sub-clause in order to provide that, in the matter of employment, preference shall be given to ex-servicemen. I agree with what the honorable member for Warringah (Mr. Spender) said in regard to protecting the rights of other employees, but I emphasize that the particular rights of ex-servicemen should be guaranteed. If nothing is done about the matter now, we may -find that we have failed the ex-servicemen in this most important matter.

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