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Democrat welcomes retention of A.D.A.B. regional offices



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CANBERRA

21 APRIL 1982 PRESS RE L EASE '^AUSTRALIA,,!*' THE SENATE

DEMOCRAT WELCOMES RETENTION OF A .D .A .B .·REGIONAL OFFICES

Senator John Siddons today congratulated the Government for ,

reversing a Razor Gang decision of the future of Australian i

Development Assistance Bureau regional offices throughout the country. ·

The offices were due to be closed, which would have left

several thousand overseas students studying in Australia

without official assistance. But in answer to a question

on notice asked last October, the Foreign Minister said this

week that the Government had recently decided that the ADAB

regional offices should continue to carry out their present functions.

These include the provision of welfare counselling services

to all overseas students from developing countries, whether

sponsored or private and assisting coordinating committees ■

to provide a community based welfare program.

Senator Siddons said the government had recently liberalised

the rules for entry of secondary school age students to

Australia, although entry at junior secondary level is in

the main confined to students attending boarding schools

because of the need to ensure the provision of adequate supervision. ·

"I welcome this move because it is a cost effective form

of foreign aid. But the sudden liberalisation is causing

some problems . · Some schools have had many more applications than they can handle," he said.

"It is a pity more notice of the change was not given so

that more youngsters could have taken advantage of Australia's educational resources," he concluded.

INf ORMATION: Senator John Siddons or Nigel Brand 72 7151

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