Pensioner's letter paints a shocking picture of life for many Australians

A Starts at 60 community member is demanding the newly appointed Minister for the Ageing give back all your entitlements.

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Leesa Lewis says she has spoken to numerous Aussie pensioners who are doing it tough adn feel they have no voice.

One signatory gave this reason for adding her name to the petition: “I signed because my standard of living has DROPPED below that of a third World country. Australia is NOT a good country to live in when you are old.”

She has started the petition, which we have printed below, and which you can sign here.

Dear Minister Ley,
We are demanding that you give us back ALL of our entitlements.
Over the last few years all of our entitlements have been stripped away, eg: dental,way too costly to go and see dentists.
Spectacles now cost over $300 to $1000, no one can buy them.
Aged care services all slashed.
We are still paying taxes and over our working lives we have earned these.
We want them back

Why is this important?

I have been sent private messages from pensioners and some of the stories are terrible.

These are people born of an era where personal financial problems are not spoken out loud, but hidden within themselves.
Trying to get them to come forth is difficult because of embarrassment and they see themselves as failures.

I am going to give a list of some of the problems that are causing impossible financial situations for these people.

All utilities, power, water, gas cost have gone way too high and and discounts to the elderly are almost nil.

Council rates are virtually impossible to catch up.

When the above bills are paid there is little left to spend on the basics. Here you can count food as a basic. Most pensioners live on a poor diet, healthy food is just not on the menu, meat being the most expensive, they live on mince or cheap sausages if they have enough money to buy it.

A good percentage do NOT have computers and these are the people that are suffering the most. Rural living is the worst for these victims, no services from council, mail,garbage etc are non existent.

Most cannot afford home upkeep, that is if they have a home, plumbing costs skyrocketed where just a quote costs $200 for a rural resident. Electricians are the same.

Some are lucky to have a tv or radio, (I personally know of some that have neither).

Luxuries are out of the question, eg: hairdresser,makeup, new clothing, shoes. Cost of clothing is a huge cost and now even second hand is expensive, check out the Salvos at Murray Bridge, a jacket seen there by a pensioner cost $30 a new one same jacket was $25 at Millers. This costing price increase was with many of the item seen there.

Pets, most have a cat or dog as company yet they are told by vets if veterinary treatments are needed and they cannot afford it,to get rid of the animal. This is just plain cruel to both the pensioner and the animal.
Pensioners are given very little time to pay any bills and if they take longer as it often happens they are penalised heavily with extra costs.
I am sure i will add more over the next few months.
So I am asking that you all vote.
You will be old one day and who knows what is in your future.

A friend and I went to buy reading glasses and to our horror we found that they will cost us over $300-$1000 each and we just walked away.
I am sure I am not the only one that desperately needs glasses for everyday life but there is no way either of us can raise that kind of money. We live rural and it is 100Ks+ to go there and fuel costs are huge as well .

I have other friends that have paid them off but the company made her feel embarrassed every time she went in to pay a small amount and it took over a year.

We want a fair deal with our health.

Please sign this petition as the pensioners we are trying to help do not have computers to scream for help.

Leesa’s petition is here if you wish to sign it.

Are you shocked to learn that older Australians are doing it so tough? Will you be signing Leesa’s petition?