Tasmanian pensioners worried by the budget

During a visit to Tasmania today, my colleague, Shadow Minister for Regional Development Julie Collins, and I met with pensioners to discuss the federal budget. We got a warm reception but not surprisingly, they gave the budget the thumbs down. Julie and I subsequently issued this joint media release:





The Shadow Assistant Treasurer, Andrew Leigh, has confirmed the Abbott Government’s Budget is no friend to Tasmania’s pensioners.

Speaking with members of the Tasmanian Pensioner Association in Hobart today Dr Leigh said the Abbott Government’s Budget would affect Tasmanians who could least afford any loss of financial support.

“This Budget not only breaks promises, it breaks the social contract with older Australians,” Dr Leigh said.


"By indexing pensions to the Consumer Price Index rather than wages, the Abbott Government is saying that pensioners should not share in any of the growth in living standards in Australia. It has been widely recognised by Labor, policy experts, pensioners and their representatives that the Consumer Price Index does not properly reflect the rising costs of living that pensioners face.”

 “This Government thinks pensioners are ‘leaners’. Labor knows that pensioners have done more than their share of heavy lifting.”

“Pensioners deserve better than the reverse Robin Hood measures in this Budget.”

 “The stories I am hearing from pensioners is that they are struggling to make ends meet and that’s without the Abbott Government’s cuts kicking in. Pensioners need our support – they don’t deserve to be treated like second-class citizens.”

The Federal Member for Franklin, Julie Collins, said Prime Minister Abbott’s Budget priorities were wrong.

“Pensioners have every right to ask Prime Minister Tony Abbott why he is willing to cut financial support while paying millionaire mums $50,000 to have a baby,” Ms Collins said.

“Every dollar lost will have a significant impact on more than 98,000 Tasmanian pensioners who are already struggling to make ends meet.

“At the last election, Tony Abbott made a solemn promise to older Australians that there would be no changes to pensions. This is not the Government he said they’d be. No wonder Tasmanian pensioners feel betrayed.”

Ms Collins said there was also growing uncertainty whether the concessions of Tasmanian pensioners would be maintained in the State Budget that will be handed down in August.


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  • Kevin Ingham
    commented 2014-07-04 16:40:53 +1000
    There are many issues with this budget and many Australians are looking for Labor to firstly:
    1. Block the unfair measures
    2. Look at Superannuation
    3. Also tax Evasion on Offshore Profits and Wealth.

    There are differing opinions in the views of economists World Wide. Some economists state that we should be spending more to enhance education and prospects for the future. We all know that innovation is just being thrown around like a football with no substance. When in fact innovation since the 60’s has only flourished a few. Plus the future is automation with more job losses; seen now in the mining sector, industry and even on the waterfront.

    I have researched China over the past few months and the economics in that country are viewed with mix messages. This is the time for great men and governments to rise to the occasion. This government has no such plans; but to alienate the weak and disabled in our society which only broadens inequality further than it is already. This is a time for nation building while we still have the AAA credit rating.

    Remember Minister Governments Govern people not commodities otherwise why are they there in the first place.

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Cnr Gungahlin Pl and Efkarpidis Street, Gungahlin ACT 2912 | 02 6247 4396 | [email protected] | Authorised by A. Leigh MP, Australian Labor Party (ACT Branch), Canberra.