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Fraud Week 2016

Federal Election 2016 - Your Vote Matters

28/6/2016

It's nearly upon us! Saturday July 2nd is the day of the Federal Election and your vote matters!

In the run-up to the election, COTA Australia and the State and Territory COTAs have been in regular touch with older Australians to find out what's important. An election panel and series of focus groups allowed COTA to survey and interact directly with members to identify the key issues that older Australians wanted the political parties to focus on in this election. We also ran an election forum where 60 people had a chance to hear from and ask questions of candidates from the four key parties.

The issues...

The national survey of election panel members identified the issues of health care and the economy as key drivers for how older Australians will vote on Saturday.

COTA SA CE, Jane Mussared, said that this election almost 600,000 of South Australian voters are aged over 50 - more than 50% of all voters. "It is important that the views and priorities of older South Australians are influential and that they are heard," she said.

Earlier this month, when COTA released its election statement, COTA Australia CEO Ian Yates said, "Our election panel of more than 1,145 older Australians clearly voiced what is important to them and what needs to be done to make sure Australia is ready for the challenges and opportunities an ageing population presents.

"Overwhelmingly the three top election issues for older Australians are access to quality health care services (77%); having adequate pensions (62%) and access to good quality aged care (57%).

"The vast majority (87%) believe the Federal Government is not prepared to provide the services and support we will need as a nation to allow Australians to age well.

"More than three in four older Australians believe the aged pension is not enough to live on and there needs to be better incentives for most people to save for superannuation, but that current incentives favour the wealthy.

"At the very least there needs to be continued support for superannuation reforms announced in the 2016 Budget or similar measures, to better target tax concessions, support women and low income earners and lift restrictions on people over 65 making contributions to their superannuation," he said.

The survey also showed that older Australians are far unhappier about the direction in which the economy is heading than younger generations, and management of the economy is the second highest issue (38%) after a quality health system (52%) in deciding how they will vote."

Mr Yates said COTA is asking all parties to commit to measures that protect Medicare, improve access to aged care, end discrimination against older workers and create bipartisan agreement around housing affordability.

To read COTA Australia's full Federal Election platform visit the website here: http://www.cota.org.au/lib/pdf/COTA_Australia/public_policy/cota-australia-2016-federal-election-platform.pdf

For more general information about the election visit the Australian Electoral Commission website - http://aec.gov.au/

How the parties measure up...

During the week, COTA Australia will be posting updates on how policies of the main parties are measuring up on the key issues - keep an eye on the website http://www.cota.org.au/australia/default.aspx to see how they're doing on the issues that matter to you.

State budget due...

In other news, the SA Government deferred delivery of its state budget until the week following the federal election - the budget will now be delivered on the 7th of July. Read about our recommendations for consideration here https://www.cotasa.org.au/news/NewsList/2016/cota-sa-submission-to-the-2016-17-state-budget.aspx. You can also visit the state budget website for more information on the current budget, including the mid year review - http://www.statebudget.sa.gov.au/index.html

Watch this space! We'll post more information and commentary after the budget's been delivered.