Federal Member for Hunter, Joel Fitzgibbon today called on the Prime Minister to immediately reinstate the Dementia and Severe Behaviours Supplement (DSBS) and stop treating dementia as a political football.

“It has been 100 days since the Abbott Government announced the axing of the $16 a day supplement paid to approved residential aged care providers caring for people with severe behavioural and psychological symptoms associated with Dementia,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“It is absolutely disgraceful that Tony Abbott waited until after the May Budget and after aged care providers had prepared their budgets, to axe this supplement with no warning, no consultation and no solutions.

“This demonstrates the fundamental unfairness of Tony Abbott’s budget.  He is happy to spend $20 billion on his Paid Parental Scheme that gives $50,000 to millionaires to have a baby, but he wants to rip money away from low income families, pensioners, people with disabilities and veterans.

“And now he claims his government simply cannot afford $16.15 a day for affected dementia sufferers, which he claims cost $110 million last year.

Mr Fitzgibbon said that the lack of consultation with the sector had left local aged care providers in the Hunter electorate reeling.

“Before the 2013 election Tony Abbott promised he would run a Government of ‘no surprises and no excuses’.

“100 days later and all we have are cruel decisions and pathetic excuses.”

To take a stand against Tony Abbott’s axing of the DSBS sign the petition here: http://www.alp.org.au/dementia.

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