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Monday, 15 September 2008

Disability pensions need immediate review too - Adele Horin

Adele Horin, commented in the Fairfax Press on Saturday on the omission of people receiving the Disability Support Pension in recent calls for increased payments to aged pensioners. Her column highlighted the case of a woman with physical disabilities, but applies to those with other disabilities too .......

Professor Peter Saunders of the University of NSW demonstrated in a 2006 study how the pension system failed to take account of the extra costs people with disabilities face. The poverty rate among people with disabilities was at least four times higher than among those without. He said the need to review their income payments was "urgent".

But in Canberra, no one heard. When the Howard government gave age pensioners and carers the $500 lump-sum seniors bonus, disability pensioners were excluded. And the Rudd Government followed suit in the May budget.

.......A compromise could be to pay pensioners another lump sum payment while they wait for a better system to be put in place - and this time, ensure Faye Druett and her fellow disability pensioners are included.

The full text is here, and was published nationally.

People With Disability Australia media release.

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