Industry Super Australia (ISA) acknowledges the announcement made by the government today and is ready to work through the all important detail that will enable people suffering hardship access to some of their super in an efficient way that doesn’t undermine our national savings system.
As we have been indicating publicly, this is an issue that must be handled very carefully in order to prevent the compounding of liquidity pressures that may be faced by superannuation funds in the current market conditions, and as they support anxious members.
Although industry superannuation funds were not consulted in the formulation of this proposal, we stand ready to engage with government and the ATO to make it work. Assisting those in financial hardship will come down to how well the ATO works with the funds, given each superannuation fund will have to manually issue the money.
Effective co-ordination from the government and the ATO will be vital to ensure the scheme works efficiently and does not frustrate people further- remembering that the workforce of many funds are working remotely just like other affected businesses.
Aside from getting the details right, we need a commitment from the government to transparently report the scheme’s applications and any issues encountered. The scheme should also be reviewed as it is rolled out to ensure it will not hamper funds’ capacity to support the macro economic recovery.