COTA Australia has applauded the Prime Minister’s decision to elevate the Ageing portfolio to Cabinet, with Mark Butler’s appointment to Cabinet as Minister for Mental Health and Ageing and Minister for Social Inclusion.
COTA Australia Chief Executive, Ian Yates, said that COTA had been calling for ageing to become a Cabinet portfolio for the last decade.
“Only this morning the final report of the Advisory Panel on the Economic Potential of Senior Australians’ on “Realising the economic potential of senior Australians – turning grey into gold” made the same recommendation”, Mr Yates said.
“We are confident that this elevation of Ageing to Cabinet will lead on to a 2012 Federal Budget that introduces major aged care reform through the implementation of the full package of the Productivity Commission recommendations in its ‘Caring for Older Australians’ report.
“Aged care reform should be accompanied by implementation of the Panel’s 36 recommendations to make Australia a better place to be older and a more productive country.
“The re-creation of a Minister of Housing is also welcomed as we have argued for the past five years that the issue of affordable and appropriate housing for older Australians is a crisis in waiting.
“COTA calls on the Prime Minister and the Treasurer to make the 2012 Federal Budget the ageing and aged care budget.
“We stand on the cusp of making Australia the most age friendly country in the world; but failure to act in 2012 will have dire consequences for both older Australians and the public purse.
COTA Australia is the peak policy development, advocacy and representation organisation for older Australians, representing Councils on the Ageing in every State and Territory and through them over 500,000 senior Australians.
Further Information and comment:
Ian Yates AM
Chief Executive Mobile: 0418 835 439