FECCA welcomes the significant $17.7 billion investment in aged care over five years announced in last night’s Federal Budget. This funding, matched with committment for representation on the new governance structures, will go a long way to ensure the needs of vulnerable older people of culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) backgrounds are met.
- Welcomes the $6.5 billion for 80,000 new Home Care Packages over the next two years. Home care is a critical support for older CALD Australians and there is an overwhelming preference amongst CALD communities to age at home.
- Welcomes the $65.2 million to increase translating and interpreting services to help CALD Australians access and navigate the aged care system. This will assist more than 75,000 people.
- Supports the drafting of a new Aged Care Act to enshrine the Government’s reforms in legislation by mid-2023.
- Supports the announcement that the Government will work towards the establishment of an office of the Inspector-General of Aged Care.
- Supports the establishment of new governance arrangements, including a National Aged Care Advisory Council and a Council of Elders.
- Notes that the Aged Care Diversity Framework should be mandated and FECCA will continue to work collaboratively with the Government on this following the review.
FECCA Chairperson Mary Patetsos said the Budget measures would assist many older CALD Australians.
“The Aged Care Royal Commission brought to light the need for significant reform and additional funding in the aged care sector,” Ms Patetsos said.
“FECCA was very active throughout the Royal Commission in ensuring that the voices of older CALD Australians and their families were heard.
“FECCA welcomes this very significant funding for the sector, particularly the additional funding for Home Care and translating services, and the announcements of new Governance structures, including an Aged Care Advisory Council and a Council of Elders.
“It is critical that the Aged Care Advisory Council and the Council of Elders both include representatives with CALD expertise and lived experiences to ensure the sector is responsive to the needs of CALD Australians and their families, and we thank the Government for recognising the importance of diverse representation on these structures.
“FECCA will also proactively work with the Government to ensure that a sustained social support program will be in place to support older people living in the community and their carers.”
FECCA is the national peak body representing Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.