LETTERS from readers, September 2019

Article published 23 August 2019

LETTERS from readers, September 2019

Email voice@cpsa.org.au , if you would like to write to CPSA to have your views and comments published online and in the monthly print version of THE VOICE, CPSA’s newsletter.


Tardy repair leaves tenant waitin’-n-wadin’

MY social housing tenancy was taken over by Link Housing Community Housing (NSW) back in December 2018.

On 17 May this year I reported a blocked bathroom drain to the department, which is still in charge of repairs. I was advised that repairs would be done within 24 – 48 hours.

The plumber made several attempts to unblock the drain, breaking the tiling in the shower recess in the process. He said that he couldn’t fix the problem as a tree root had invaded the old drain pipes.

A few days later another plumber came to inspect the blockage and said

it was a big job to gain access to the blockage as the drain is under the concrete floor at the back of our house.

Since May, I have been persevering with broken tiles in the shower recess and a flooded bathroom floor every day. If I shower or bathe and clean my teeth the water backs up from the shower and bath and floods the floor. Nine or ten (I’ve lost count) plumbers and contractors have been to inspect the drain since May. At what cost to Link Housing I wonder?

Each time I phoned Link Housing I was told action will be taken and another plumber comes out to tell me the same story. I have made complaint after complaint over the last few months as no one ever calls me back with advice of any progress and plumbers have come and gone and it is now August and still no solution to this mess.

As an elderly tenant I am disgusted and appalled at this treatment as I use a walking stick and I am frightened of falling over on the wet floor. Do Link Housing or FACS care? Apparently not.

It was not until I threatened to approach the media with my story that a contractor phoned me (that was a nice change!) the next day to say that work will start on Monday 12 August.

Llieda Wild

By email

(THE VOICE has since learnt that repairs were done on Wednesday 14 August: the power of the press! Ed.)


One Age Pension for all

PENSIONERS are losing out on the Age Pension and deeming rates, and also those seniors who are on Newstart.

But please, don’t just sit back and whinge about it. Use your media and publicity nous. Better still advocate fiercely for a universal Age Pension.

Australia is a rich country, and if it can afford large tax cuts to the rich and wealthy top end of town, it can afford a decent and respectable Age Pension system.

Some politicians say they can’t pay more because of the Budget bottom line. That is rubbish. The Australian Government must make the age system work and there is no reason why it can’t, except that it is being stingy.

You have the means to put this government on the front pages of every newspaper and TV station in the country, but no one seems to have heard of you except pensioners.

You can be a force to be reckoned with.

Tom Mullen

By email

(Thank you, but the media makes up its own mind, as it should. Ed.)


Self-self-managed super

THANKS for the article Here’s how to self-manage your externally self-managed super (THE VOICE August 2019) on Hostplus. Auditors of SMSFs are external but if one shops around, the fee does not have to ‘make your eyes water’. Ours is well below $1,000.

Then there is the ATO external fee which one can’t escape (about $300). As for the accounts we do our own after some guidance from our auditor back in 2005. We make mistakes, the auditor corrects them and that’s it.

It is enjoyable to keep an eye on the dividends coming in and any new wrinkles inflicted on us by Government but generally it’s OK. The big scare was the loss of imputation credits but that is now behind us until the next election.

We did contact Hostplus when the imputation credits loss looked a certainty, but they didn’t make it easy for us to swing over wanting two funds, one for my wife, one for myself (two fees). All our shares had to be sold but we will examine the new proposals for SMSFs. It all boils down to fees.

We understand we are getting old and may have to use others ‘one day’. We will cross that bridge when we get to it.

Bob Meadley

By email


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