House debates

Tuesday, 30 July 2019

Questions without Notice

Pensions and Benefits

2:50 pm

Photo of Mike KellyMike Kelly (Eden-Monaro, Australian Labor Party, Shadow Assistant Minister for Defence) Share this | | Hansard source

My question is to the Minister for Government Services. I refer to the minister's previous answer. Can the minister then explain why 79-year-old widowed pensioner Norm Austwick from Mogareeka in my electorate was sent a Centrelink robo-debt letter this month claiming a debt from 21 years ago?

2:51 pm

Photo of Stuart RobertStuart Robert (Fadden, Liberal Party, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme) Share this | | Hansard source

Let me thank the member for his question. In relation to the specific case he mentioned, my understanding is the gentleman is a former public servant who was incorrectly sent a letter dealing with an income stream issue, not an income compliance issue—income stream which deals with pensions. The department recognised the error and have apologised profusely, including in the media.