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Wednesday, 31 July 1946

Mr WHITE - In this Parliament, Unrra received unanimous support. Australians were chosen to serve in the organization. Many of them resigned from responsible positions here, though knowing that they would take the great risks of famine, disorder and disease. Yet the Government insists that they shall pay income tax on their earnings. Australians are the only members of the staff of Unrra whose incomes are taxed. An officer who, during the war, served with me in the Royal Australian Air Force has written to me on behalf of a number of Australians who are so situated. All of them have signed it.

Mr Anthony - Are Americans on the staff of Unrra obliged to pay income tax to the Government of the United States of America?

Mr WHITE -No. My correspondent is the Commanding Officer of a group which includes Americans, Dutch, French, British and Canadians, and only the incomes of the Australians are taxed. When I raised this matter in the House some time ago, the Treasurer replied that some members of the staff of Unrra were " doing pretty well ", because they were earning more abroad than they earned in Australia. Is that an answer to my appeal for justice for these men who are rendering international service and upholding Australia's name? As no Minister is in the House, I address this appeal to honorable gentlemen opposite who support the Government. I urge them to persuade caucus to direct the Government to alter this decision.

Dr Gaha - We are not " game " to. We would feel the iron heel of caucus if we did so.

Mr WHITE - Unfortunately, honor able members opposite are fettered to the policy of the Government, but I cannot believe that the Honorable member for Denison (Dr. Gaha) could be silent, whatever the circumstances. The Government's financial proposals are mostly make-believe.

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