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Wednesday, 21 October 1964

The CHAIRMAN - Order! The honorable senator's time has expired.

Senator DameANNABELLE RANKIN (Queensland) [10.45]. - I refer to that section of Division No. 475 - State Establishments - which relates to the housekeeper service in Queensland for which £2,200 has been allocated. I am glad to see that the appropriation has been increased from last year's amount of £1,870. This housekeeper service is of tremendous importance. There is a great need for it not only in my State of Queensland but in other States as well. However, £2,200 is not a very large amount to allocate to this service. If the grant were larger the service could be greatly extended. I should like the Government to consider that aspect. 1 am interested to know how the amount is arrived at. Is the appropriation requested by the organisations themselves or by the State Governments? Knowing the number or organisations that are endeavouring to give this service, and knowing their need for financial assistance, I am sure that if the request came from the organisations a larger amount would have been sought.

I am interested also to know why the allocation for Queensland is the only one recorded. In his report the DirectorGeneral of Social Services points out on page 20 that this grant provides assistance to State and voluntary agencies conducting housekeeper services. The allocation followed a pattern somewhat similar to that followed in previous years. In 1963- 64 a total of £13,370 was distributed. New South Wales received £5,900, Victoria £4,100, Queensland £1,870, Western Australia £1,000 and Tasmania £500. Despite these allocations, Queensland is the only State mentioned in these estimates. Why are the other amounts not mentioned?

The housekeeping service in Queensland is doing very good work for people who need it because of illness or disability. Mothers returning from hospital with young babies are faced with a big problem. In the circumstances, will the Government consider allocating a larger sum in future so that this valuable service can bc extended in Queensland?

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