Calls for Centrelink's & # 39; robo-debt & # 39; scheme to be scrapped after dozens of people were wrongly targeted – including a mother whose disabled son had recently died
- Labor wants the government & # 39; hard and cruel & # 39; Centrelink robo-debt settlement canceled
- The opposition believes that the & # 39; robo debts & # 39; scheme goes wrong too often
- A mother was instructed to cough up thousands after her disabled son died
Labor urges the federal government to implement a & # 39; hard and cruel & # 39; computer program that is used to reclaim money from Centrelink receivers.
The opposition believes there is increasing evidence that the & # 39; robo-debts & # 39; scheme goes wrong too often.
& # 39; There have been thousands and thousands of instances where the mechanism to determine if a debt is wrong is wrong, & # 39 ;, Labor vice leader Richard Marles told ABC Radio National on Tuesday.
Labor urges the federal government to implement a & # 39; hard and cruel & # 39; computer program that is used to reclaim money from Centrelink receivers
ABC's 7.30 program on Monday was broadcast in a segment of the robo-debt process and said Centrelink compliance officers were urged to meet the daily targets for debt collection.
The program also revealed the case of a mother contacted by Centrelink about an alleged debt owed by her son, who had died six months earlier.
Anastasia McCardel was in the dark about the truth of the alleged robo-debt and Centrelink wrongly implied that she was personally liable after her disabled son, Bruce, died.
Labor spokesman Bill Shorten said that legitimate debts must be recovered, but robo-debt was a & # 39; mess & # 39 ;.
He calls on Minister Stuart Robert to return to the drawing board about the & # 39; defective & # 39; system.
& # 39; The automated calculation claims false debts that, when challenged, have resulted in more than 100,000 claims that have been changed, & # 39; said Mr. Shorten.
& # 39; Yet robo debt is not only inaccurate. It is enforced in a harsh and cruel manner and we now know that it is driven from above. & # 39;
Anastasia McCardel hailed Centrelink for the insensitive handling of her son's case and that they have not done the right thing & # 39;
Bruce McCardel died in November 2018, at the age of 49 and his mother was informed by Centrelink that he had a debt to pay
The burden of proof lies with the people to prove to the department that they do not owe the money.
& # 39; It is becoming increasingly clear that this government intends to balance the books on the back of some of our most needy and vulnerable people, & # 39; said Mr. Shorten.
Mr. Robert stands for the robo-debt policy.
& # 39; Over the past four or five years, the department has reclaimed $ 1.9 billion in overpaid amounts and we have a legal responsibility to do that & he said to the ABC.
& # 39; There is a legal obligation for us to ensure that our highly targeted social security system has the right people who get the right money at the right time. & # 39;
The minister also defended the practice of collecting debts from the legacies of dead people.
& # 39; In cases where someone has died, the debt is significantly increased or the estimate made as to whether it is economical to actually recover & # 39 ;, he said.
& # 39; In many cases, the debt is lost and wiped out. & # 39;
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