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Time to scrutinise insurance, power tariffs and skilled aged care workers

21 Nov 2017

Do you think that qualifications are crucial and/or required in the Aged Sector?

For those Territorians are paying excessively for insurance, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has been directed by the Australian Government to conduct a wide-ranging inquiry into the supply of residential building (home) contents and strata insurance in Northern Australia. The ACCC will host public forums across northern Australia in late November/early December.

Some of the matters to be considered are, but not limited to, the pricing and availability of insurance to consumers in northern Australia; the competitiveness of markets for insurance in northern Australia; and the terms and conditions on which insurance is supplied and quite a few more issues.

The first forum is in Darwin on the 22 November at the Oaks Elan, Darwin at 5.30pm and the second is in Alice Springs on Thursday the 23rd November at the Aurora, Alice Springs at 5.30pm. (View more information about these forums). We all know that we pay through the roof, (excuse the pun) for insurance and now is the time to attend these sorts of forums, so the Federal Government and the ACCC can hear the consumers’ side of the story.

Another Power and Water Consumer Advisory Council meeting has been held and discussions were centred on tariff structure. It is interesting to note that electricity is 44% or around $1,050 of the average annual household bill. However, the tariffs assist in recovering the costs of building and maintaining the poles and wires, and the support staff needed to keep the energy network operating. Who doesn’t appreciate the workers, who in the middle of a storm, go out and try to reinstate power, especially when it is a lightning strike. Sometimes we forget that they really do risk life and limb to keep the power supply up and running.

COTA also attended a meeting with the Industry Skills Advisory Council NT recently regarding the shortage of skilled aged care workers, especially in rural and remote areas. Discussions centred on qualifications and training. Do you think that qualifications are crucial and/or required in the Aged Sector? Please visit our website and have your say by emailing ceo@cotantorg.au. With the Territory having the highest growth in the over 65s age range (35%), there is going to be large demand for aged care workers and at present there over 95,000 jobs Australia-wide in this sector, so we really do need to plan ahead.

Sue Shearer, CEO COTA NT

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