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Thursday, 22 August 1912

Senator GARDINER (New South Wales) . - I ask the Minister of Defence to give consideration during the adjournment to the case of New South Wales warrant officers and drill instructors who are about to be retired, although in the prime of life, at the age of 60, or thereabouts, after thirty or forty years' service in the Military Forces, first of the State and then of the Commonwealth. I understand that they are still well fitted for the work which they have done so ably, and that there is no provision by way of a bonus or pension to alleviate the hardship of their retirement. In New South Wales it is the practice on the retirement of Government employes, whether maintenance men employed on the roads, or men in other positions, to give a bonus of a month's pay for every year 'of service. It is a sorry spectacle to see a man too old to remain in the employ of the Commonwealth and too young to be eligible for an oldage pension, retired without any monetary consideration. The men to whom I allude have served a lifetime in a very poorly paid service, for many years not getting more thanĀ£3 a week. I should have brought the matter up in another way, but for the peculiar circumstances of the session. I hope that during the recess the Minister will determine to follow the example of New South Wales, and grant to retired officers a month's pay for every year of service.

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