SHARON GRIERSON MP
Federal Member for Newcastle
JILL HALL MP
Federal Member for Shortland
THE HON GREG COMBET AM MP
Federal Member for Charlton
THE HON JOEL FITZGIBBON MP
Federal Member for Hunter
A FAIRER FUTURE FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITY
Hunter Labor MPs welcome the announcement of a strong and stable funding stream to deliver DisabilityCare Australia, the national disability insurance scheme.
Labor is committed to building a better life for people with a significant and permanent disability, and their families and carers, including those in the Hunter. For this reason, the Government will increase the Medicare Levy by half a percentage point from 1 July 2014. This will take the Medicare Levy from 1.5 per cent of taxable income to 2 per cent.
“DisabilityCare Australia will provide a better life for people with disability,” Shortland MP, Jill Hall said.
“It will also provide peace of mind to all of us that if we or a loved one acquire a disability, we will be supported.”
Charlton MP, Greg Combet, said the plan created a clear choice, between a Labor Government that will deliver and sustainably fund DisabilityCare Australia, and the Coalition who for 11 years neglected their responsibility to Australians with significant and permanent disability.
“We must care for the most vulnerable in our community, but for too long, the disability system has been inequitable. This is a reform that every person in this country can be proud of,” Mr Combet said.
Newcastle MP, Sharon Grierson, said a secure funding stream would strengthen the scheme, which launches in the Hunter Region in July this year.
“As a launch site, Newcastle will be in a position to reflect the reality of how the DisabilityCare will benefit people’s lives, Ms Grierson said.
“Having a secure funding stream in place progresses the implementation, and reinforces that this will be part of life for those living with a disability.”
Hunter MP Joel Fitzgibbon said disability reform had been in the too hard basket for too long.
“I am pleased for the many struggling families making enormous sacrifices to support loved ones with too little support from government.”
Low income earners will continue to receive relief from the Medicare Levy through the low income thresholds for singles, families, seniors and pensioners. The current exemptions from the Medicare levy will also remain in place, including for blind pensioners and sickness allowance recipients.
Even after this change, Australians will still benefit from the Government’s three rounds of tax cuts and the tripling of the tax free threshold. For example:
• Someone earning $30,000 a year will pay an extra 41 cents a day in Medicare levy, but still be paying $903 less income tax per year than they were in 2007;
• Someone earning $70,000 a year will pay an extra 96 cents a day in Medicare levy, but still be paying $953 less income tax per year than they were in 2007;
• Someone earning $110,000 a year will pay an extra $1.51 a day in Medicare levy, but still be paying $1903 less income tax per year than they were in 2007.