Monday, 19 June 2022
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander superannuation members will remain at a structural disadvantage to non-Indigenous Australians without tailored reforms to the nation’s retirement system, according to Aware Super.
Welcoming passage of the Commonwealth Government’s Referendum legislation, Aware Super’s Chief Executive Officer, Deanne Stewart, said widening gaps in retirement outcomes between Indigenous and non-Indigenous members illustrated the need for a representative advisory body to speak directly to the nation’s parliament and government.
“I commend the Australian Parliament for passing this important legislation, to allow all Australian voters a say on the issue of constitutional recognition for our First Australians,” said Ms Stewart.
“Australia has the best retirement savings and planning system in the world, but there is still significant room for improvement when it comes to delivering the best possible outcomes for ATSI peoples.
“Over the past decade industry super funds like Aware Super have worked closely with Indigenous leaders and representatives to help our organisations develop reconciliation action plans. What has become very clear is that well-intentioned systems like super simply aren't enough to deliver equitable outcomes for Indigenous Australians and their families.
“Challenges such as the life expectancy gap for ATSI peoples, complex kinship structures and highly localised issues including generational unemployment and low levels of financial literacy are all areas where systemic reforms would benefit from the deep understanding a representative advisory body would be able to convey to Australia’s legislature.
“While we encourage everyone to seek the information they need to form their own views on the referendum, Aware Super affirms our support for the Uluru Statement from the Heart, and its call for recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the Australian constitution through the Voice to Parliament.”
Aware Super is the nation’s third-largest industry super fund by funds under management and has 1.2 million members.