Jun 23, 2020

ANTHONY ALBANESE, BILL SHORTEN, MARK DREYFUS & LINDA BURNEY – MEDIA RELEASE – IT’S TIME FOR A ROYAL COMMISSION INTO ROBODEBT – TUESDAY, 23 JUNE 2020

 

ANTHONY ALBANESE MP
LEADER OF THE AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY
MEMBER FOR GRAYNDLER

BILL SHORTEN MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR GOVERNMENT SERVICES  
SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE NATIONAL DISABILITY INSURANCE SCHEME 
MEMBER FOR MARIBYRNONG

MARK DREYFUS
SHADOW ATTORNEY-GENERAL
SHADOW MINISTER FOR CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM
MEMBER FOR ISAACS

LINDA BURNEY MP
SHADOW MINISTER FOR FAMILIES AND SOCIAL SERVICES
MEMBER FOR BARTON

 

IT’S TIME FOR A ROYAL COMMISSION INTO ROBODEBT

 

Federal Labor will today call for a Royal Commission into the Morrison Government’s illegal Robodebt scheme so a disaster like this never happens to the Australian people again.

 

Millions of Australians were targeted for four long years by this Government, in a bid to artificially boost the budget bottom line with up to 740,000 unlawful debts.

 

The Prime Minister himself was the architect of this cruel scheme designed to extract $1.5 billion in unlawful debts from the Australian people.

 

A Royal Commission would shed light on critical questions that might otherwise go unanswered, including:

  • Who came up with the idea for the scheme and what due diligence was done, what advice was obtained, prior to its implementation?
  • When did the Government first learn that its Robodebt scheme was unlawful?
  • Did the Government settle legal challenges, and choose not to appeal adverse AAT determinations in order to avoid a court ruling that the scheme was unlawful?
  • How was such a fundamentally – and obviously – flawed scheme allowed to continue for as long as it did?
  • In total, how much has the failed scheme cost the Australian taxpayer?
  • In total, how many debts have been issued under the illegal Robodebt scheme?
  • How many Australians have been harmed by the Robodebt scheme?
  • How many Australians have taken their own lives after being pursued by the Government, or by debt collectors paid by the Government, for debts under the illegal Robodebt scheme?

 

A Royal Commission could also make recommendations – including for law reform – on the sole use of “data matching” and automated processes.

 

Australians deserve the truth. Australians deserve action to stop this from happening again.

 

The Morrison Government is all spin and no delivery. Whether it’s Robodebt, allowing criminals to steal people’s superannuation or the HomeBlunder package, then never deliver and it’s Australians that feel the painful consequences.

 

The Government has continued to hide from scrutiny and refused to answer basic questions about the scheme. Only a Royal Commission will ensure they are held to account.

 

TUESDAY, 23 JUNE 2020