The elitist Life Gold Pass is set to survive into 2017 as Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, like former PM Tony Abbott, has squibbed previous promises to ditch the discredited scheme, Greens democracy spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said.
“Prime Minister Turnbull’s excuse that his government is too ‘busy’ is rubbish. We all know three weeks ago the Senate ran out of legislation
to debate,” Senator Rhiannon said.
“Just last month Special Minister of State Scott Ryan said the bill would be introduced before Christmas.
“These promises started two and a half years ago when the Liberal-National government announced it would axe the Life Gold Pass legislation. The proposal has tripartisan support. Since then the government has used every excuse to delay the introduction of the bill.
“Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott boasted in 2014 that he would scrap the scheme and end the ‘age of entitlement’. Many have been left wondering if this snouts in the trough scheme will ever end.
“The Coalition love to pretend they are serious about scrapping this elitist scheme, and appear to use that for some good PR. But again they are all talk and no action, and continue to allow dozens of parliamentarians to reap the spoils of an elitist, embarrassing scheme.
“Meanwhile, across the public service the Turnbull government has taken a harsh and uncompromising stance towards public sector enterprise agreement bargaining, leaving thousands of workers without proper pay and conditions proposals.
“Royal perks for some and substandard wages and conditions for others makes for a very cynical electorate,” Senator Rhiannon said.