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The Government’s newly announced Women’s Economic Security Statement was a missed opportunity to improve retirement outcomes for women, said the Australian Institute of Superannuation Trustees (AIST) today.
AIST CEO Eva Scheerlinck said while the domestic violence measures in the package were welcome, it was disappointing that the Government had backed away from including key measures to help many Australian women achieve a more dignified retirement.
“Women need economic security throughout their lives, which includes financial security for an increasingly long retirement,” Ms Scheerlinck said. “The broken work patterns of many women, coupled with the persistent gender pay gap, mean there is an urgent need for targeted measures to prevent many Australian women retiring in poverty.”
Key Measures that AIST had called for to include in the package were:
Commenting on the measures in the package relating to super and domestic violence, Ms Scheerlinck said while the early release of super always needed to be carefully considered, the extension of early release for victims of domestic and family violence was supported by AIST and notably HESTA, which had led the advocacy on this measure.
“This is a positive move though we will need to ensure that the immediate needs of domestic violence do not compromise long term economic security in retirement,”
Ms Scheerlinck said. Ms Scheerlinck said the industry would be consulting with the Government about release criteria and how the measures would be implemented by funds. Ms Scheerlinck also welcomed the move (long called for by the Women’s Legal Service Victoria) to improve the visibility of super assets in family law proceedings which she said would help women achieve fairer financial outcomes by reducing costs and delays in the courts.
Media contact: Janet de Silva 0448 000 499
AIST is the peak body for the $1.2 trillion profit-to-member superannuation sector which includes industry, corporate and public-sector funds.
20 November 2018