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Friday, 21 November 1941

Senator COLLINGS - The Minister for Defence Co-ordination has supplied the following answers:-

1.   It is not legally possible to effect a transfer of men from the Royal Australian Air Force reserve to the Australian Imperial Force. Inorder to effect such a transfer each man would have to be discharged from the reserve and to volunteer again for service with the Australian Imperial Force. Furthermore, thenumber of men now on the reserve is such that the average waiting period is approximately four months only, and it would be impossible, even if it were legally permissible, to release these reservists without serious consequence to the carrying out of the Empire Air Training Scheme in Australia.

2.   It is contrary to fact to say that there are many skilled or semi-skilled tradesmen at Point Cook and Laverton who could be employed to better advantage in a government munitions factory. For some considerable time past facilities have existed under which skilled tradesmen maybe transferred to the Royal Australian Air Force reserve in order to enable them to take up civil employment of national importance and, up to the present time, some hundreds have already been released under this scheme.

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