Labor’s Protecting Pensioners Taskforce
22 June 2021
The Federal Parliamentary Labor Party has established Labor's Protecting Pensioners Taskforce.
Eight years ago, Tony Abbott pledged there would be no cuts to the pension. Yet, over the past eight years, the Liberal National government has cut the pension or attempted to cut the pension time and again. And Labor has fought these cuts tooth and nail.
This taskforce will connect with pensioners from around Australia, listening to how the Liberals and Nationals' cuts have impacted them.
The taskforce will also consider the impact of the government's proposed and prospective cuts to the pension, and the government's war on retirement.
The taskforce will also examine the impact of the government's future plans for pensioners including concerns about the cashless debit card.
Pensioners have worked hard and contributed all of their lives. They deserve dignity and respect.
A history of the Liberals and Nationals' pension cuts
- As recent as August 2020, the government was caught out by Labor on its pension freeze for 2.5 million pensions.
- The government continues to shortchange pensioners with unreasonably high deeming rates.
- In 2014, they tried to cut pension indexation – a cut that would have meant pensioners would be forced to live on $80 a week less within ten years.
- In 2014, they cut $1 billion from pensioner concessions – support designed to help pensioners with the cost of living.
- In 2014, they axed the $900 seniors supplement to self-funded retirees receiving the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card.
- In 2014, they tried to reset deeming rates thresholds – a cut that would have seen half a million part-pensioners made worse off.
- In 2015, they did a deal with the Greens to cut the pension to around 370,000 pensioners by as much as $12,000 a year by changing the pension assets test.
- In 2016, they tried to cut the pension to around 190,000 pensioners as part of a plan to limit overseas travel for pensioners to six weeks.
- In 2016, they tried to cut the pension for over 1.5 million Australians, by scrapping the energy supplement for new pensioners.
- The government's own figures show this would have left over 563,000 Australians who are currently receiving a pension or allowance worse-off. Over 10 years, in excess of 1.5 million pensioners would be worse off.
- They spent five years trying to increase the pension age to 70.
As Social Services Minister Scott Morrison tried to cut the pension. As Treasurer Scott Morrison tried to cut the pension. As Prime Minister Scott Morrison tried to cut the pension.