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Thursday, 20 April 1961

Mr McCOLM - That is a silly statement. I will come to that point in a moment. The letter continues -

One would imagine from Mr. Dunstan's letter that the Queensland aboriginals and half-bloods, subject to the existing Act, are dissatisfied with their lot and that their conditions are not equal with those applicable to coloured people in other States. That such is not the case is evidenced by the following: -

1.   No aboriginal child in Queensland is restricted from attending a State or Church school.

2.   Aboriginal children participate equally with white children in all sports controlled by the various sporting organizations of the State.

3.   Aboriginal workers from Palm Island Settlement are employed in thesugar industry and as cane-cutters workunder the same conditions as applies towhite workers. They carry the same Union ticket as does the white man.

4.   The Queensland Government Railway Department and the Main Roads Department likewise employ aboriginals under conditions similar to white workers and in one instance, at least, an aboriginal is a ganger in charge of white and coloured workers.

There is a wide gap between the thinking of the aboriginal and many of the advocates for alteration of his present status in Queensland. That these advocates are not all ignorant of the position in Queensland is evidenced by the following: -

Unfortunately, I have not time to read the statements which follow. I have much pleasure in supporting the statement made by the Minister.

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