Barry O’Farrell’s pensioner cash grab

Member for Watson, Tony Burke, has slammed New South Wales Liberal Premier Barry O’Farrell’s decision to take part of the Federal Government’s pension increase from more than 86,000 NSW pensioners living in public housing.


The Federal Labor Government’s new Clean Energy Supplement began on March 20th. The Liberals have already begun ripping some of it away from pensioners in public housing, by including it in their calculations for rent increases.

“I know that pensioners on a fixed income have the least room to move in their budgets. That’s why it’s so important that when prices go up, the pension goes up to match it,” Tony Burke said.

“The Gillard Government is delivering a boost for pensioners to help them make ends meet. This increase is designed to help pensioners, not Barry O’Farrell’s budget bottom line.”

“I’ve had several local residents call my office and tell me that they have received a letter from Centrelink informing them about the increase, only to receive a letter the very next day to tell them the rent has now gone up” Mr Burke said.

“This is a cruel and cynical cash grab,” Mr Burke said.

“Tony Abbott and the Liberals have promised to claw back every cent of the support Labor is delivering pensioners under the Household Assistance Package.

“Under an Abbott Government, every single pensioner in Australia would lose more than $350 a year and every pensioner couple would lose more than $530 a year.