Drop retirement age for blackfellas, says advocate

A petition calling on the retirement age for Indigenous Australians to be dropped to 55 could finally be presented to the federal parliament later this year.

Queensland man Brett Nutley has been collecting signatures for the petition since late 2014.

He says while it has had more than 14,000 Facebook likes and only has 1,400 signatures, but he’s hopeful it will gain momentum in the second half of this year and could be presented to parliament in a couple of months.

Ideally, he’d like 10,000 signatures before he takes it to a federal MP to be tabled in the Senate.

Mr Nutley said the difference in life expectancy for Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians made the current retirement age of 65 unfair for Indigenous people.

“I had a lot of uncles and men friends who were dying before 50,” Mr Nutley said.

“They weren’t getting anywhere near retirement age.”

His petition asks to lower the optional retirement age for Indigenous Australians to 55 years with full superannuation and old age pension entitlements.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics the average life expectancy of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander men from 2010 to 2012 was 69.1 years — 10.6 years less than non Indigenous men.

For Indigenous women the life expectancy was 73.7 years — 9.5 years less than non Indigenous women.

Earlier this year the National Welfare Rights Network warned that any moves to raise the retirement age any further would discriminate against Indigenous Australians because of the life expectancy gap.

To sign the petition please click onto this link

Wendy Caccetta



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