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McClure Report into Social Services in Australia - Interim Report

Discussion in 'Finances, Work, and Disability' started by Sean, Jun 29, 2014.

  1. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Based on the Henry review: (pp 147-8)

    A single participation category, without additional packages, would actually prevent many disabled from even looking for work. It costs money for accommodations to be made, not just by employers but by the disabled. Without that then on a reduced income many disabled who might be able to work part-time might find themselves financially unable to explore this. They may need additional help with transport, work accommodations, lifestyle adjustments (cooking, cleaning, etc. things they might do now but could not do if working part-time) and so on.

    On the face of it, based on simple ideology, this report looks appealing. The devil is in the details, as the saying goes. Loose ideology and broad ideas don't help if the implementation costs blow out, people are made homeless or starve, the suicide rate spirals out of control, crime rates spiral, and pervasive social unrest leads to strikes, demonstrations and riots. When these things happen outcomes decline, and costs spiral up. The medical, emergency, judicial and police systems will be stretched to their limits, and then corners will be cut at even greater cost to society. Its not a way to save money for a better society, its a way to waste money and destroy our future for a worse society, a worse country to live in.

    Any such program needs to be based on pilot programs, in which people are participating and give feedback. Further, if outcomes are bad then participants need to have their original situations restored with additional compensation.

    To make things worse, as things go pear shaped in implementation, costs blow out, delays become the norm, and pensioner outcomes spiral downward, then to maintain political credence the government may be apt to crank up anti-disability hate speech. For examples of these things we only have to look at the UK and the DWP/ATOS saga. Its a colossal failure, from start to its inevitable demise.

    I am deeply suspicious its all a smokescreen though. DSP is the second biggest category. Which is the big one? Aged pensioners. They might be targeted as part of this, one way or another, in due time. Yet that wont be politically acceptable currently. The government needs to rack up a few wins first. Sadly they may rack up a series of unmitigated defeats, and make the Coalition less popular than the Communist or Nazi Parties if they existed in this country.
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  2. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    There are of course special circumstances. ME patients are not evaluated reliably in the current system. This is nearly always about overestimating our capacity, sometimes massively overestimating our capacity. In the very near future we will have to take up this fight with advocacy .. not eventually, soon. Young ME patients are about to face this, in a system which is incapable of evaluating their potential and in the absence of adequate assessment might resort to punitive measures.
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  3. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    The graph of page 162 (did someone already mention this, I can't find it) tells the real story. Workforce participation is up, benefits are down, its a long term trend. They are misrepresenting outcomes based on projected costs in real dollars, not relative costs.

    Except of course for the aged pensions. They are projected to spiral up over time. That might be what all this is really about.
  4. Sean

    Sean Senior Member

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    Agreed.
  5. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    What I don't understand with the old age pension is that the govt are saying the cost is going up, but in the next few years more and more people will be funding their own retirement pensions through superannuation contributions. So less govt money will be spent on this.

    With the above argument, I don't understand why both labor and liberal govts have increased retirement age from 65 to 67/70?

    even if people can only fund a year or a few of retirement than that saves the govt alot of cash.

    I just don't understand it? The money they save could be used in disability pensions etc.
  6. Sean

    Sean Senior Member

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    You are assuming that this government actually gives a shit about the average citizen.
  7. AndyPandy

    AndyPandy Making the most of it

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    I might be wrong but I think the proposed retirement age of 67 increasing to 70 relates to access to age pension.

    Private super can be accessed for retirement according to your "preservation age". Eg mine is 55. There is a sliding scale according to when you were born. Of course this may well change in the future.

    The longer they make people work before accessing the age pension, the more taxes they bring in and they pay out fewer years of age pension.

    How some people will manage to work to 70 is beyond me. I suspect most will end up on another kind of benefit before they are eligible for the age pension. If those benefits pay less than the age pension, then that is still a "saving".
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  8. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    This is something they are not saying. Superannuation savings wont pay for most people's retirements. Our savings are inadequate. The super schemes are inadequate. A big chunk of people will happily retire on super, but many blue collar workers wont be able to. Most politicians will be able to.

    This is also about taxation. There is expected to be a huge rise in the ratio of numbers of retired to numbers of workers. We are living longer. The population is growing slowly. So fewer and fewer people will be paying taxes that go to more and more. Its also a drive to have an immigration program, to bring in more young workers and especially those with money to invest.

    Now if you are in your early twenties, and getting anything like the average wage, then you may have good retirement prospects. If you are over 50 and getting very good salaries, then retirement prospects are also good. For everyone else they are not great. Super is not expected to cover many people given current lifespans. Its inadequate. Huge numbers of people, especially casual workers, have no super at all.

    If, like me, you are over 50 and have zero savings or super, then we are a huge risk. Death or pensions are in our future.

    Old age pensions are also not just about simple pensions. There are many other concessions that have to be paid for.

    The rate of disability has been going down as a long term trend. There is no indication of a spike. There is no indication that there is widespread fraud, and the fraud rate is extremely low. I suspect most who defraud the system get caught in time, though it can take years.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2014
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  9. Sean

    Sean Senior Member

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    Gets better. If you look at the amounts that people get convicted for, it is often at petty cash level, no more than a few hundred dollars. Not exactly the earth shattering budget destroying scam we are being told by some.

    This is for people who are not exactly living the high life to start with, and at least a fair chunk of those 'convictions' are people just trying to make minimal ends meet under rules that are too onerous and difficult to live up to.

    Interestingly, the highest rate of conviction by benefit type was single parents. I doubt that means they are more criminal than the rest of us, but instead that the rules they have to live under are just impossible to meet, children being notoriously difficult to fit into nice neat little schedules and all, and not too keen on going hungry, etc.
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2014
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  10. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    Im going to disagree with you for once alex. I think we (Aussies with ME/CFS) should be taking up that fight now not soon when we are then in a crisis mode due to it, which we can see is going to happen more and already does happen. So many with ME already are now being affected (and this has always been so) by our systems often incapablility of assessing the ability of ME people and our younger ME ones are about to be hammered by this.

    We should be finding out if our ME/CFS organisations are currently trying to work with the gov on this to make sure these arent unfairly targeted with the cut backs of people from disability and if not, making it clear to them that we view how ME/CFS people are being assessed (often unfairly), as a matter of urgency and that we want them to take it up with the gov as a matter of urgency due to how the situation is about to worsen for ME people.
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  11. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    yeah, many will end up on a different pension before they reach 70, that would have to be thou disability pension wouldnt it? Which does that pay more then aged pension? (so would cost the gov actually more?) or have I assumed that wrongly?
    heapsreal likes this.
  12. AndyPandy

    AndyPandy Making the most of it

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    I was thinking about older people who won't be able to get a job due to their age, won't be old enough for the age pension and won't be eligible for DSP ending up on Newstart or some other kind of "working age" payment which will pay less.

    I don't see DSP eligibility being softened, particularly with the scenario of increasing numbers of older people not yet eligible for the age pension. I suspect they will make it hard for these people (and everyone else) to get DSP.
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  13. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Need to push Griffith university to get there testing recognized as a diagnostic test or biomarker. This will help get rid of the psycho babble image and show its physiological illness which can stop a lot of crap with getting disability and thinking prescribing some pyschobabble treatment will get one back to work.
  14. AndyPandy

    AndyPandy Making the most of it

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    @taniaaust1
    ME/CFS SA has a post on their website about proposed changes to DSP. They are encouraging members and others to let them know if they experience problems with this. They seem to have a optimistic view of the government's intentions, but nonetheless appear to be proposing lobbying the government with medical evidence etc if PWCs experience problems.
    taniaaust1 and Sean like this.
  15. taniaaust1

    taniaaust1 Senior Member

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    That's great to hear, thanks :) . I think the SA society currently has their heads screwed on right.

    They also in recent times has made membership much cheaper (even thou they could really do with the money), to those who couldnt afford it before as they know they need the numbers to lobby the gov better.

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