Aged care accountability bill voted down by Pauline Hanson siding with the Liberal Party
Aged care homes spend just $6 a day on food for older, former tax payers now paying aged care Mafioso hundreds of millions of dollars to neglect them. They deserve much more than what the Mafioso dish out
from ABC and Cairnsnews
Sydney’s streets were thick with smoke as the blazes took hold on December 5 last year. That may explain why few noticed or cared about the final sitting day in Canberra.
But what happened in the Senate that day shows just how strong the ties that bind the aged care lobby and government really are.
At 9.30 that day, some crucial amendments to aged care legislation were introduced which would force nursing home to reveal how they spent their $20 billion of taxpayer funds each year — specifically, how much went to staff, food and “the amounts paid out to parent bodies”.
Unlike hospital and child care centres, aged care facilities can employ as few staff as they like because there are no staff-to-resident ratios in nursing homes.
When it comes to food, a study of 800 nursing homes shows the average spend is just $6 a day.
The Senate vote was taking place just five weeks after the scathing interim report from the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.
Among its findings of a “sad and shocking” system which was “inhumane, abusive and unjustified”, the commissioners also commented on the lack of transparency in aged care, with the numbers of complaints, assaults and staff numbers all kept secret from the public.
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“My amendments are all about transparency and accountability — and, boy, do we need more of this,” said Senator Stirling Griff from Centre Alliance, who proposed the amendments.
When the crucial vote came, Labor, the Greens, Centre Alliance and Jacqui Lambie supported it. But the Government voted against it and, with the help of Pauline Hanson, the reform was defeated.