The Australian Government has ditched its plan to raise the age at which people become eligible for the Age Pension to 70. It held on to the plan for more than three years after announcing it as part of Budget 2015.
CPSA welcomes this move. Labor, which raised the eligibility age to 67, opposed a pension age of 70, so that both major parties are now committed to not raising the eligibility age above 67.
Many of the more than 100,000 people over 50 who are on Newstart and may have no real chance to ever work again now at least know they won’t have to wait an extra three years for the Age Pension.
Those few who have superannuation can access it in the knowledge that the Age Pension will be there three years earlier.
Economic hardheads are crying foul, pointing out that the Age Pension costs the Budget $40 billion a year and that this will rise unless something is done about it.
What none of these hardheads have done is explain why the fix has to be at the expense of the more than 100,000 people aged 50 and over who are on Newstart.
In contrast, there have been many measures in recent years, which have favoured the wealthy.
If we need to fix a Budget problem, let’s look at all the things that cost a lot of tax dollars.
Incidentally, those who are on Newstart and are waiting for the Age Pension to kick in, they can apply for the Age Pension thirteen weeks before turning pension age. It is important to do so to ensure there’s no gap between Newstart payments and Age Pension payments.