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Tuesday, 14 May 1957


Mr BRYANT (Wills) .- The training time for national service trainees is to be reduced from 176 days to 140 days, and I should like the Minister for the Army (Mr. Cramer) to explain how the trainees will spend that training time. The training of 12,000 men for 140 days involves a great deal of man-power and a great number of man-days. It is of no use for the Government to deny that there has been a great deal of uneasiness in the community because it is felt that national service trainees are not receiving profitable military training during the time that they are in camp. Why was the period fixed at 140 days? How is it to be apportioned over the five years of training? Will the Minister assure the committee that the Citizen Military Forces units to which trainees will be sent for the completion of their training will be adequately equipped, and that the conditions of service will encourage the trainees to soldier on? I referred last year to military establishments in Victoria, and particularly to one at Scrub Hill, where conditions discouraged men from serving. These are important matters. On what basis have the Minister's advisers selected the period of 140 days for the partial training of soldiers to the standard that the Government claims they will reach?







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