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Monday, 14 October 1991
Page: 1891


Mr REID(10.58 p.m.) —-A matter relating to qualifications required of young persons residing in Australia to operate a bank account and the impact and difficulties for exchange students from overseas has been brought to my attention by Mr Arthur D. Cowling, the international president of Y's Men International. He asked me to raise this matter because, as you know Mr Acting Speaker, there are students coming into Australia sponsored by Rotary, Lions and also the Y's Men youth education exchange program.

One young lady had, with her parents, made arrangements to transfer into a bank account in Australia a sum of money to enable her to do some travel on her own account whilst in Australia. However, when she went to the bank to draw some money out she was required to provide documents for identification based on a total of 100 points. She presented her passport, which qualified her for only 70 points, and was refused access to the money. We can understand the embarrassment for the student and also for the host family.

Surely a valid passport, which obviously identifies the subject, is sufficient documentation to suit any bank. I can understand that if a person does not have a passport, other identification has to be provided. No doubt

that is where the points system has evolved from. But I am unable to accept that it should be necessary if a valid passport is produced. I ask the Minister at the table, the Minister for Aged, Family and Health Services (Mr Staples) to take up this matter particularly with the Treasurer (Mr Kerin) and also the Minister who is responsible for youth affairs, because I believe this is a most important issue and requires attention.


Mr ACTING SPEAKER —-Order! It being 11 p.m., the debate is interrupted. The House stands adjourned until 2 p.m tomorrow.

House adjourned at 11 p.m.