WHEN former treasurer Peter Costello introduced an annual bonus payment for carers, he acknowledged that carers saved the federal government $22billion annually. No doubt this figure has risen. It was rumoured that the Henry tax report would recommend a superannuation scheme for carers, backdated to the time the carer was officially recognised and paid a carer’s pension by Centrelink. I have heard nothing further of this.
The role of caring can be rewarding, but at the same time is emotionally, physically and financially draining. At retirement age, carers often have very little by way of savings. Meanwhile politicians are distracted by constant squabbling.
I urge carers to contact their local federal member, in particular Minister for Disability Reform Jenny Macklin, to voice their concern about the financial plight of carers. If carers save the government such huge amounts of money, surely it is about time a scheme was introduced to alleviate the financial burden carers will carry in their older years.
Kenny Hicks, Blacksmiths