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Thursday, 3 April 1941

Senator AMOUR (New South Wales) . -

Senator Cooper - Thousands of returned soldiers now own homes in Australia.

Senator AMOUR - And thousands have lost their homes. That is something that should be borne in mind.

Senator Cooper - Only a very small percentage.

Senator AMOUR - That is not so. 1 asked the department to supply me with the number of war service homes in the Belmore, Canterbury and Bankstown area, and it took me three hours on one day and three hours on another day to drive around in a motor car and merely look at them. When Senator Cooper says that only a small percentage of returned soldiers have lost their homes, I invite him to take a look at Vilmy-street in Bankstown. There is hardly a returned soldier left there. There are probably as many war service homes in the Canterbury area as there are in the whole of Queensland. When it is seen that a soldier has no chance whatsoever to meet his commitments, the Government should reduce the interest charge. Many of the war service homes were built for about £900, and originally the occupants had to pay interest at the rate of 5 per cent. That charge was subsequently reduced to 4 per cent. What chance did the occupants have to purchase their homes? They were barely able to meet the interest charge. When the depression came - and another depression will come - many of them lost their homes.

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