COTA NT Response to Federal Budget 2020 – Not a Lot for Seniors
7 Oct 2020
COTA NT has welcomed the 23,000 additional home care packages promised over the next four years in the Federal Government’s Budget and is also pleased with the $500 pension supplements to be paid in two parts in December and March. However, with about 100,000 older Australians waiting up to 18 months for adequate home care, this is a small down payment on a very big unmet need and leaves many with a long wait or a forced moved to hospital.
“As it is, there are well over 50 seniors in Royal Darwin Hospital and Palmerston Regional Hospital who could be at home with their aged care packages, or in specialised dementia facilities,” states COTA NT CEO Sue Shearer.
“On behalf of Territory seniors, the four years that it takes to release these 23,000 home care packages is just not good enough. As it is the Federal Government only spends $116m on aged care in the Territory, this is a pittance and we believe that most of the eastern States will receive these extra packages. So where does this leave Territory seniors?”
“COTA NT is also deeply disappointed that the Budget failed to recognise the plight of older workers,” continued Ms Shearer. “Many were already facing a bleak employment future, but COVID- 19 has increased their vulnerability in the employment market. In the same way that special and extraordinary measures have been unveiled for people under 35, the same focus and support is urgently needed to ensure older workers can get back to work.”
Media Contact: Sue Shearer 08 8941 1004