Abbott attacks low-paid retirement incomes

The Abbott Government’s announcement that it will scrap the 15 percent tax on superannuation income above $100,000 a year, while removing superannuation tax breaks for workers on less than $37,000 per year, shows the new Government is intent on rewarding the wealthy and holds worker’s needs in complete contempt.

ACTU President Ged Kearney said the Abbott Government had already shown its true agenda by scrapping a range of measures that supported workers and their families. “These decisions will leave millions of workers on average incomes worse off in retirement, while ensuring that wealthy retirees can earn unlimited tax-free income from the superannuation.

“The Abbott Government is attacking ordinary workers’ ability to have a decent and secure retirement while bringing back tax breaks for the rich.

“The 15 percent tax on superannuation incomes over $100,000 per year would have affected less than one percent of retirees, while raising $300 million for public services. It is not unreasonable to expect that the wealthiest retirees pay some tax on their superannuation income, when they are earning far above the average wage.

“What makes this decision even more offensive is combining it with scrapping superannuation tax concessions for workers on low incomes.

“The previous Labor Government introduced the Low Income Superannuation Contribution, which reduced tax on superannuation contributions from workers on less than $37,000 per year. This was a boost to the superannuation of 3.6 million workers, including 2.1 million women, many of whom are combining raising a family with part-time work.

“Now, under Mr Abbott these workers will be paying more tax on their superannuation than on their take home pay and will have less money in retirement.

“This is on top of cutting the School Kids Bonus, which has helped millions of families with education expenses.”

“These decisions are giving us a worrying insight into the Abbott Government’s attitude to ordinary workers and their families.”

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