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Wednesday, 6 May 1942

Senator ASHLEY - On the 1st May I promised that information would be obtained in answer to the following question which SenatorUppill asked the Minister representing the Minister for Labour and National Service, upon notice: -

1.   Will the Minister say whether the chairman of the recently constituted Women's Employment Board is the same person who has stood as a Labour candidate for election to Parliament?

2.   Is ita fact that the other two permanent appointments to this board are officials who have been closely associated with the Labour movement for some time?

3.   If the answers are in the affirmative, will the Government give some assurance that efforts will be made to prevent the Minister for Labour and National Service making appointments of this nature?

The Minister for Labour and National Service has now supplied the following answers : -

1.   The chairman of the Women's Employment Board stood in 1917, unsuccessfully, as a Labour candidate for election to Parliament. Subsequently he was appointed by the Government of Victoria to be a judge of the Victorian County Court. The Commonwealth Governmenthas appointed him to be chairman of the Women's Employment Board.

2.   One of the other two permanent members of the board is a trade union official nominated by the Australasian Council of Trade Unions to represent employees' interests. The other is a servant of the Crown who was appointed by the late Government and who has been nominated by the Minister for Munitions, the largest employer of female labour, to represent employers' interests.

3.   The Government does not regard -

(a)   unsuccessful Labour party candidature for Parliament,

(b)   membership of a trade organization. or

(c)   appointment to a public position by a non-Labour government, as disqualifications for any public position.

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