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Wednesday, 13 November 1974
Page: 2328

Senator WHEELDON (Western AustraliaMinister for Repatriation and Compensation) - I want to say briefly that I appreciate

Senator Sir KennethAnderson's contribution to this debate, as I usually do on most subjects. Without necessarily agreeing with him, most of us on the Government side do have a high regard for his contribution. The problem that Senator Sir Kenneth Anderson refers to of involving people is the major problem we have with this plan. Already even those people who belong to some organisation, whether it is a church or some sort of club, in a sense are organised in some way and do have relationships with a body operating within their area. The people who have the most need for a plan of this type are probably people who have no affiliations of any sort with any organisation, and this is one of the difficulties with advertising. When one talks about distributing pamphlets, many of these people are not the sort of people who will read a pamphlet or even a newspaper, for that matter. For this reason it would seem to me, and I think certainly it is the Government's view, that it is desirable that as many organisations of all kinds as possible should become involved in the operation of this plan, even though when one looks at the narrow objectives that the organisation has they may appear to bear very little relation to the field of social welfare. It may be a motor cycle club or a pigeon fanciers' club or something like that.

Certainly so far as I am concerned, and I believe that I am speaking for the Government, the more people who are politically in opposition to the Labor Party who can become involved in this plan the more we will welcome it. I would certainly welcome the participation of members of the Liberal Party and of the Australian Country Party in this plan. If I were to find that within the various regional councils there were a large number of members of the Liberal Party playing active or leading roles, that I would regard this as being a sign of the success of the plan because that would show that the Government had established co-operation in an important field between people of differing persuasions- religious, philosophical and political. I know that with the type of attitude Senator Sir Kenneth Anderson has we have a real prospect of accomplishing that end.

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