Tuesday, 8 December 2020
Women's Economic Security
That the Senate—
(a) notes that:
(i) on average, women retire with superannuation balances 50% lower than those of men,
(ii) 40% of older single retired women live in poverty and experience economic insecurity in retirement,
(iii) an estimated 220,000 women miss out on a combined $125 million of superannuation contributions as they do not meet the requirement to earn $450 per month from one employer, and
(iv) the Government deliberately excluded consideration of systemic problems in the superannuation system for women from the terms of reference of its retirement incomes review, despite 100 prominent Australians in senior business roles writing to the Treasurer and calling on him to do so; and
(b) calls on the Morrison Government to help women achieve equality in retirement by responding to the inequality raised in the retirement incomes review's final report and look at the systemic issues that lead to inequality between men's and women's retirement incomes.
The Retirement Income Review considered the distributional impacts of the retirement income system across the population, including women. Indeed, section 3B of the report focuses entirely on gender issues. The report covers issues of adequacy, equity, cohesion and sustainability, and women were considered at each stage. Of course, Senator Bilyk would be well advised to read the report. The best way to reduce gender pay gaps in retirement is by reducing them in working life. Under this government, prior to COVID-19, there were more women in work than ever before and the gender pay gap had closed to its lowest level on record at 13.9 per cent.