This government should be ashamed of its unprecedented attacks on pensioners. The Prime Minister promised before the election that there would be no change to the pensions. This is one of the biggest broken promises yet. His nightmare of a first budget included cuts to pension indexation, cuts to pensioner concessions, cuts to deeming thresholds for part-pensioners and an increase in the retirement age to 70.
These cuts will have a terrible impact on the 12,220 aged pensioners in my electorate, who have said that they will struggle to make ends meet. They never voted for cuts to indexation, which will leave them as much as $80 a week worse off within a decade; they never voted for a government that will rip $23 billion out of the pension system by 2024-2025; and they never voted for the oldest retirement age in the world. These callous cuts will unfairly impact on low-income workers, blue-collar workers and women, and they will unfairly impact on those on disability support pensions.
I will read from a letter that I received from a woman in my electorate who is on the DSP. She asks me:
… if you can, on my – and others – behalf – take up the battle to stop these changes from occurring. Please, PLEASE bring to the attention of the media and public the comment by Abbott on 1st September 2013, which now appears to be a blatant lie. And please advocate for people like me.
Jacqui, we will take up the fight. We will continue to fight for you and we will continue to fight these— (Time expired)