17.1 C
Byron Shire
August 9, 2022

Council on the Ageing welcomes Labor’s stance on aged care

Latest News

Our growth under threat, say local distillers

Local independent distillers behind iconic labels Ink Gin and Brookie’s Byron Dry Gin say a longstanding ‘bad’ government policy that taxes spirits unfairly, compared to other alcohol such as wine, is putting thousands of jobs at risk in a ‘dangerous high inflation environment’.

Other News

Plan for floods

Some stories have been told and the full story of the 2022 floods is still unfolding. Society is realising...

Splendour in chaos

As a local resident of Wooyung I have watched North Byron Parklands (NBP) increasing their patronage to the maximum...

OS Community Garden launches food stall

Members of the Shara Community Gardens gathered on July 31 to launch their new food exchange stall on Shara...

Ballina development application worries locals

A DA has just gone on public exhibition for a 15 unit, two storey complex in the midst of a large suburban block between Norton and Camden Streets, Ballina, not far from North Creek. Surrounding residents have a number of concerns.

Splendour cash disbursed

Schools and community groups have shared in community grants worth  $50,000 from Splendour in the Grass. 

Couple lose everything to house fire

A house on Mill Road, Huonbrook, went up in flames last Friday and thankfully no-one was injured. Police, the fire brigade and emergency services attended.

COTA welcomes improved aged care policies. File photo.

COTA Australia, the peak body for older Australians, say they welcome announcements by the ALP that will increase funding transparency, establish a General Duty of Care to protect residents and workers, and put bad providers in jail if they deliberately breach it.

Labor has also recently announced it would appoint a dedicated Aged Care Complaints Commissioner within the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission and give the Commission new investigative powers and the ability to apply civil penalties for any aged care provider who punishes residents, families or workers that complain.

COTA Australia Chief Executive, Ian Yates, said he was pleased Labor was supporting COTA’s long standing call for a ‘tough cop on the beat’ in aged care, with increased powers and penalties.

‘Civil penalties if providers punish someone for complaining and criminal penalties for breaching a General Duty of Care demonstrates that Labor is taking seriously the neglect reported by the Royal Commission,’ said Mr Yates.

‘This industry needs to get rid of its far too many bad eggs and lift the standards for all – something its peak bodies have consistently failed to do, so we welcome the industry regulator having the strongest powers.

‘We have also long argued that beyond penalties, whoever is in government must ensure that the consistently poorest performing  providers are taken out of the industry. The extra powers for the Quality and Safety Commission should be extended to include that, and we look forward to discussing this with Labor.’

Responses to Royal Commission

Mr Yates said that some of the announced measures announced by Labor match the government’s response to the Royal Commission’s recommendations, while others indicate that the ALP is working through the Royal Commission’s recommendations and signalling its own priorities.

‘We are pleased to see Labor set out a clear and forceful response to the neglect reported by the Royal Commission over two and a half years ago, and its Final Report over a year ago,’ Mr Yates said.

‘Reforming aged care is not an easy task – there are few silver bullets and there are still too many poorer quality providers. We look forward to more details of the Opposition’s plans and to working with Labor on the measures they have foreshadowed.’

Mr Yates also called on Labor, and all parties, to commit to the implementation of the Royal Commission recommendations and timeline, which now include the government’s response, and the detailed planning and consultation already well underway.

‘In particular, we look forward to hearing the Opposition’s policies to support the more than one million older Australians receiving care and support in their home, including Home Care Package recipients, who due to the accelerated rollout of packages by the Government, now exceed the number of people in residential care,’ he said.

‘Planning of the new Support at Home program is well advanced and is a high priority for older people and their families.’

Mr Yates said COTA welcomed Labor putting aged care front and centre in the forthcoming election. ‘We have come a long way since 2007 when neither party released an aged care policy. In this election we need comprehensive policies from all parties that really deliver for older Australians,’ he said.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. ‘This industry needs to get rid of its far too many bad eggs and lift the standards for all – something its peak bodies have consistently failed to do, so we welcome the industry regulator having the strongest powers.”
    The industry is already ‘regulated’ yet we still have the national shame that is Aged Care.
    ‘Honest John’ Howard opened the doors to privatised aged care and so long as Government is happy to let “can-do capitalism” rule the aged care roost we will continue reading the horror stories coming out of aged care.
    Clearly the Government’s idea of regulation has been a free pass to aged care providers to milk the system for all that they can extract, leaving a mess that is well past needing cleaning up.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Comment: Time for another Police Royal Commission? 

It might be time for another investigation into the NSW Police Force, but this time, the police conduct under the microscope would be alleged overreach in the application of certain powers.

Tucked away in a Mullumbimby music studio, a group of local musicians have been pouring their hearts out through song.

Pedal power celebrated at Murwillumbah film night

Those with an interest in films and cycling will be in heaven this Thursday night (August 11) when the Regent Cinema in Murwillumbah hosts the Big Bike Film Night.

Beekeepers can get a permit to move hives away from flood water

With so many challenges currently surrounding the bee industry, it comes as a relief to many that NSW Department of Primary Industries will issue a special group permit for beekeepers in flood warning areas to move their hives to higher ground.