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Wednesday, 19 April 1972
Page: 1273

Senator WILLESEE (WESTERN AUSTRALIA) asked the Minister representing the Minister for Social Services, upon notice:

Is it a fact that persons who have left school either under discretionary, provisions of the relevant Education Act or who are above the minimum school leaving age, are, if unable to obtain employment, ineligible for unemployment benefit if they are under 16 years of age.

Senator GREENWOOD (Victoria) (AttorneyGeneral) The Minister for Social Services has provided the following answer to the honourable senator's question:

The Social Services Act authorises payment of unemployment benefit to males between the ages of 16 and 65 and to females between the ages of 16 and 60. This has been the position since unemployment benefit first became payable in 1945.

However, where special circumstances involving hardship exist, payment of special benefit may be made to a person under 16 years of age who, after becoming a member of the workforce subsequently becomes unemployed.

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