The 2022 Federal Election is so far proving to be positive for Older Australians. Not only are we seeing competing but strong commitments from the major parties on fixing aged care, but also policy releases from many parties in a range of other areas including retirement incomes, concessions, lowering the cost of PBS medicines, and more. We have put up a page here when you can see what political parties are saying on the issues that matter to us.
That page is built around our major statement An Agenda for Government from Older Australians – Policy Recommendations for the 47th Parliament. We made our recommendations in that way, rather than for “election policies”, because Older Australians are better off when there is consensus, rather than contest, about the policies that matter to and directly affect us. COTA Australia will continue to work with everyone across the Parliament for the benefit of Older Australians, no matter the outcome of the election.
In pursuit of our policy recommendations, we have also invited a number of relevant Ministers and Shadow Ministers to join us in a series of conversations on our Facebook Page (accessible with or without a Facebook account). You can access recordings of those events at https://www.facebook.com/cotaAus, and I will email newsletter subscribers with updates as we announce extra speakers in coming weeks.
As well as our Agenda for Government, we prepared two other important publications this election – a Candidates Guide, which we have been sending to candidates as they were announced since last October; and a Journalists Guide to the 2022 Federal Election which we launched to an online forum of journalists and have distributed to a wide range of media. We recently publicly released both of these and there are links to them below. We also have print copies if you would like one.
In the 15 years since the 2007 election, when neither major party announced a policy on aged care, we’ve come a long way. Whilst the last term of Parliament was seemingly dominated by the pandemic, we also had the Aged Care Royal Commission, the Retirement Income Review, and seemingly a developing consensus to support a stronger Superannuation system and guarantee the Age Pension well into the future. The next Parliament will have many challenges, and we hope Members and Senators work together across the chambers to keep the momentum up to make Australia a better place for older people.
Ian Yates AM