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Thursday, 5 August 1926

Senator BARNES (Victoria) .- Hundreds of applications for invalid and old-age pensions have passed through my hands, and, excepting in this instance, I have had no cause forcomplaint as to the manner in which they have been dealt with by the department. My purpose in ventilating this matter to-day is not to reflect upon the officers of the department; I believe that invariably they endeavour to act justly, but because in this case it appears to me that a glaring wrong has been committed I have followed it up. My action to-day is not inspired by vindictiveness. I claim to be a fair man, as able as are most people to see the merits of a case. Because I considered that this woman had a just claim I patiently exhausted every means of obtaining justice for her. I am satisfied that a great wrong has been done to her. I take the Minister's assurance that he will make further representations to the Treasury in her case as an indication that there is still hope that she will obtain justice. I ask, not for mercy, but for plain justice. When a woman makes a claim in July, which is rejected in October, and continues to fight, believing in the justice of her claim, eventually convincing the department of the correctness of the information supplied by her, her pension should be paid from the date when her application was first submitted - in this case, the month of July. In view of the Minister's assurance I ask leave to withdraw my motion.

Motion, by leave, withdrawn.

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