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Australians accept the responsibility for repatriation

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The Minister for Repatriation, Mr. R.W. Swartz, said today

that the overwhelming majority of Australians had always accepted

the responsibility of caring for disabled ex-servicemen.

They approved of the system through-which ex-servicemen weie

grant e d ent it 1 ernent. -

Mr., Swartz was commenting on a letter signed "Parkinson5s

Second Disciple" which appears in the latest issue of the Medical

Journal of Australia.

Mr. Swartz emphasised the great assistance the Australian

Medical Association and its members were to Repatriation and

stated that without their full co-operation the present high

standard of Repatriation Service would not be possible.

However, the latest letter had merely the status of a private

comment in a field which the writer clearly could not or would not

understand. This was abundantly clear from the fact that a full

explanation of the basis for Repatriation entitlement had appeared

under the Minister’s name in a recent issue of the Medical JournalĀ®

The country owed a great debt to ex-servicemen, particularly

those disabled through their war service and past experience had

shown that their fighting spirit was very much alive when

unwarranted reflections had been cast on them, and on this occasion

the Australian disabled ex-servicemen are well able to defend

themselves against such unfortunate attacks.

However, said Mr. Swartz, many ex-servicemen accepted for

Repatriation treatment with psychiatric disabilities may not be

in a position to defend themselves and it should be understood

that these disabilities when accepted by the Repatriation Department

as due to war service, are accepted on the basis of all evidence,

including that of competent doctors.

- Mr. Swartz said that his Department was proud to be associated

with the present extensive system of medical treatment and the

Government would certainly not withdraw from, providing proper

Repatriation facilities for eligible ex-servicemen simply on the

basis of uninformed criticism.

Canberra, October 15th ^ / ^ b 3 .