20 June 2018
The South Australian Government’s introduction into parliament today of a bill to establish an Adult Safeguarding Unit delivers on a key change campaigned for by Australia’s banks and senior’s groups to establish a body to make good faith reports of suspected elder financial abuse that can then be investigated.
In February, Australia’s banks renewed their push for change and called on the Federal, state and territory governments to make key policy decisions by Christmas. These changes are:
- Standardised Power of Attorney orders across state and territories
- An online register of Power of Attorney Orders
- A designated safe place for local bank staff and members of the public to report suspected abuse.
On Monday the Council on the Ageing, National Seniors, the Older Persons Advocacy Network and the Finance Sector Union all joined forces with the banking industry to mobilise the Australian public behind the campaign for change, launching an online petition.
Australian Banking Association CEO Anna Bligh said that this was an important win for the senior’s groups and the industry in their campaign to see all levels of government play their part in tackling the problem.
“Australia’s banks, together with seniors groups and the Finance Sector Union, have been lobbying the government for a long time to see key initiatives such as this one established,” Ms Bligh said.
“This is an important step and an example to other states and territories of what needs to be done to address this growing issue.
“There is still a long way to go, with states, territories and the Federal Government needing to accelerate their efforts to standardise Power of Attorney orders and create an online register,” she said.
To get on board with the campaign go to www.ausbanking.org.au/elderabuse and show your support.
Contact: Rory Grant 0475 741 007
“No customer is going to wake up the day after the 31st of March and find that there is some legal action being taken by their bank on their loan.”
“For the first time, banks are unveiling an industry-wide Financial Assistance Hub. The site aims to inform and assist bank customers so they know exactly where they stand, and the support their banks will provide them.”