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Thursday, 22 October 1964


The honorable senator is getting on to policy again.

Senator FITZGERALD - I do not want to do that. I merely wish to draw the attention of the Government and of departmental officers to what is happening in other parte of the world, particularly in relation to mistakes that have been made. Mr. Hooke referred to the application forms that are filled in by migrants in other countries. He said -

Application forms are still somewhat extravagant in their use of the querulous query sign. Most of the questions should be reserved for the interview. The interview itself should be raised to its proper significance as the most important single feature in the procedure, thus also the interviewing officer must be of very high calibre.

He pointed out that this problem arises in any part of the world where a person completes an application form. He went on to mention doctors and doctors' fees in these terms -

The migrant costs Australia many hundreds of pounds which we willingly pay as being a fair charge, but in face of this large investment we still insist upon the migrant paying the doctor's fee for his medical exam.

Now this is just plain stupidity. The cost nationally is infinitesimal but the delays and wastages caused by its application more than offset the gains attributable to publicity and propaganda.

I could go on, but I will hand this document to the Minister in the hope that the officers of the Department who are rendering such valuable service to Australia will read and digest Mr. Hooke's article.

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