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Media release: Thank you & farewell to National Seniors Australia's Chief Advocate


After almost seven years of advocating for the rights of older Australians, Mr Ian Henschke has left National Seniors Australia and his role as Chief Advocate.

After almost seven years of advocating for the rights of older Australians, Mr Ian Henschke has left National Seniors Australia and his role as Chief Advocate.
“Ian joined National Seniors as Chief Advocate in 2017. During this time, he has championed our advocacy work, elevated our profile and together with the support of credible research and sound policies, positioned National Seniors as a leader in age-related advocacy,” Chairman Mr Ross Glossop said.


Thanks to Ian and the collective efforts of the Advocacy, Policy and Research team, National Seniors has achieved positive outcomes for older Australians including:


  • Retaining the energy supplement for new Age Pension recipients
  • Opposing the proposal to scrap franking credit cash refunds
  • Securing a regulated price for electricity together with basic consumer protections
  • Reducing the Pension Loans Scheme rate to 3.95% (now Home Equity Access Scheme) and making it available to everyone of pension age
  • Retaining the pension age at 67 years-old instead of the proposed 70 years-old
  • Reducing deeming rates for pensioners and other payment recipients
  • Campaigning government to reduce the home care wait list by 25 percent in twelve months by releasing tens of thousands of home care packages
  • Increasing the income test threshold for the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card to give more self-funded retirees access to concessions.


Recently, the team has been advocating to reduce the barriers to older workforce participation. In September the government announced a permanent increase to the Work Bonus limit from $7,800 to $11,800 providing more money in the pockets of working pensioners.


Mr Glossop said National Seniors will maintain its media profile while also pursuing a new strategic direction that has a greater emphasis on government relations.
“Our advocacy efforts in the public arena are important to raising awareness and garnering public support for our work –we simply couldn’t do what we do without that platform. However, equally important is our advocacy efforts in the political arena and this is where National Seniors will more firmly focus our energy moving forward,” he said.
“To support this, the board is recruiting a Chief Executive Officer. The CEO will leverage expertise in government relations and lead transformational change to ensure we have the right structure to best support our work and the diverse needs of those we represent.

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