Wednesday 31 May, 2023

Mr TARZIA (Hartley) (15:20): I recently attended the Glynde RSL Sub-Branch annual dinner. It has always been a spectacular occasion and I do sincerely thank the RSL for all that they do for the local community.

There I was joined by Cheryl Cates, President of the RSL SA/NT; Colin Hentschke, the President of the Glynde RSL Sub-Branch; Mr Neil Bradtke, Secretary of the Glynde RSL Sub-Branch; and the very hardworking Kevin Duke. Kevin is one of the long-term councillors and representative for the City of Norwood Payneham and St Peters and, of course, Mrs Mel Blondell who is a board chair at Lutheran Homes (LHI) also representing Mr Tim Chia.

There I took the opportunity to thank the RSL for all that it does for the advocacy of our veteran community in Glynde. Each and every year they put on several events to commemorate our veterans, whether they be dawn services, ANZAC Day, or Remembrance Day. Whatever the particular event is, they always do it with such warmth and magnificent hospitality for the local community to pay tribute to our veteran community and I thank them for that. We appreciate all their dedication that they put into those services as well.

The assistance that staff and volunteers provide currently for serving and also ex-serving personnel throughout our RSLs, we cannot say thank you enough for what they do. Putting these events on and members' programs is greatly appreciated. I think it is especially needed in today's world, because we know that transitioning from military to civilian life can be a somewhat challenging and difficult period for veterans and their families. So it is crucial that they have access to quality support and sometimes that support can just be talking to other people in the same type of situation, knowing that you can work together with these services, with the local community and that they have support, which is very, very important.

I would also like to acknowledge that the sub-branch turns 20 this year and in so doing I want to thank again the Glynde RSL Sub-Branch for having me at their special event. We always receive extensive warmth and hospitality from that sub-branch. I wish them all the best and I look forward to continuing to see them in the future.

Whilst I was there I also received several books, but there was one particular book. With the blessing of James Jury I would like to talk a little bit about the book that he has recently scribed. I would like to donate this one, if it is appropriate, to the parliamentary library. It is called Young Australians at War 1914-2022: Young Men for the Cause 1914-1918.

This book was published in November 2022 but it is aimed at informing and educating young Australians on past conflicts that Australia has been engaged in fighting from 1914 until now. Mr Jury has considered that it is necessary to do so. What a worthy cause. I think it is really important that the next generations do continue to appreciate all that Australians in the past have gone through to defend our liberty and our freedoms. I think that is certainly a story worthy of praise and a story worthy of capturing.

I do thank Mr Jury for all he has done. For example, the First World War had a devastating impact on Australia. If you look at 1914, for example, the Australian male population, as he tells us, was less than three million, yet over 400,000 volunteered, enlisting to fight in the European war. As many as 62,000 young Australians gave their lives for the purpose at Gallipoli and the Western Front. That represented 14 per cent of enlistments. South Australia alone had 34,959 enlistments and that represented 8 per cent of the state's population of 437,000, with unfortunately 6,600 killed.

According to statistics, considering all conflicts from 1914 until 2022, a total of 89,555 Australians died for this cause and 160,270 service personnel were wounded, so a total of 1,493,309 Australians enlisted during these conflicts. I want to thank them for their service. Those people will never be forgotten. We will always remember them. Lest we forget.