Welfare Priority List

Disability Payments and Associated Income Support Payments and Pensions

  • All disability payments and other associated income support payments and pensions to be indexed by the most beneficial indexation formula that best reflects changes in the cost of living.
  • The Consumer Price Index (CPI) is rejected as a fair indexation method.
  • All payments are to be included in all pension indexation rounds and any lump sum increases that are applied to other federally funded pension payments.

Disability Payments – Maintenance of Value

  • Ensure that the value of all levels of disability payments (general rate increments, intermediate rate, special (TPI) rate and EDA rate) are maintained through the continued application of the most beneficial indexation formula.

Veteran Aged Care

  •  Government act immediately to secure and oversee the provision of aged care facilities for Veterans, and provide assistance to Veterans to meet the cost of obtaining retirement village type accommodation.

Mental Health – Condition Acceptance Procedures and Funding

  •  Provide better and simplified mental health assessment, treatment, and compensation regimes, including improving and simplifying psychiatric condition acceptance procedures.
  •  Provide adequate funding to ensure eligible Veterans have timely access to mental health professionals, mental health programs and facilities, including specialist hospital treatment.

Defence Superannuation 

  • Remove the age restriction on access to fairly indexed Defence Superannuation payments.

BEST Funding

  • Adopt the Victorian BEST funding allocation model to ensure even distribution of BEST funds according to need.
  • Review any excessive use of BEST funds for paid advocacy in preference to providing funds for direct costs relating to operation of veteran centres.
  • Ensure adequate funding to meet, at least, the costs of operating the Regional Veterans Centre Project in Victoria.

Pharmaceuticals

  •  Provide free pharmaceutical services for entitled Veterans.

Complementary Medicine and Health Services

  •  Provide free access to all complementary medicine and health services for eligible veterans.

Partner Carer Gold Card Entitlements

  •  Extend gold card entitlements to Carer partners of Gold Card holders.

Funeral Benefit

  •  Funeral benefit currently payable under VEA be increased to the same level available to other Veterans under MRCA.

Counseling Access

  •  Remove time limits for access to VVCS Counseling Services for divorcees.

Role of Carers

  •  Give proper recognition to the role of Carers of Vietnam Veterans.
  •  Provide funding and resources to allow access to community health facilities and adequate respite breaks.

Extend Education Support Criteria

  •  Extend eligibility criteria for education support to include eligible Veterans on the General or Intermediate Rate of disability compensation.

Legal Aid

  •  Provide the same legal aid service level through State Legal Aid commissions to Vietnam Veterans in all States irrespective of the case.

Retrospective Awards

  •  Continue reviews into the lack of bravery awards made to Vietnam Conflict service personnel with the aim of retrospectively making appropriate awards, including allowing foreign awards to be recognized.
  •  Broaden the award of active service medals to include personnel who were engaged in certain logistic support and evacuation operations.

War Graves

  •  Maintain as official war graves, the graves of all Vietnam Veterans who died on active service and are buried in Australia, irrespective of whether the funeral was conducted privately or with Military Honours.

Voluntary Work

  •  Acknowledge the value of TPI Veterans undertaking voluntary work, and ensure that voluntary work is not considered in the assessment of a Veteren’s eligibility to any compensation or pension payments.