In the Federal Budget handed down on 25 October 2022, several measures were announced that will benefit older South Australians, including cost of living, healthcare and housing.
At a time where cost of living pressures are very real and difficult for older South Australians, particularly those on a fixed income, the Government’s focus to reduce inflation will be a welcome relief for many. Health and housing are two of the more important factors affecting older people’s quality of life, and COTA SA is pleased to see the budget include measures to improve the primary health system, and address Australia’s housing crisis with investment in affordable housing. It will be important to ensure that new housing is not only affordable, but accessible, adaptable and close to amenities.
Another important measure is the investment in aged care reform with the Government investing $2.5 billion over the next four years. This will include a pay rise for aged care workers, an Aged Care Complaints Commissioner and responding to the recommendations of the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety. COTA SA is also pleased to see the one-off credit to the Work Bonus scheme to support older people in the labour market up until June 2023.
Other measures of importance to older South Australians are investment to extend NBN infrastructure to help address digital exclusion, disaster readiness and reducing the taxes of eligible Electric Vehicles.
COTA Australia has said that this is a budget that has kept its promises to older Australians and gone further in some areas; however there is certainly still work to be done – read COTA Australia’s more in-depth statements on their website.