Women and the Australian Retirement Age Income System

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This report focuses on women, not because the system benefits men and maltreats women. There are many men who are discriminated against by the current system just as there are women who do very well. We focus on women because they make up the majority of the aged now and will continue to do so in the future. They must be explicitly considered as the major recipients of retirement age income systems. The first chapter presents data on the current position of retirement age women and analyses the marital and employment patterns that are likely to shape the economic situation of future generations of elderly women. In the second chapter we describe the current structure of the three components of the system for old age income and the interactions between them, and particularly the relative coverage of women by the three systems. The third chapter investigates options for regulation and reform of the current system to help it better meet the structure of women1s lives. Chapter Four discusses issues in the design of a national superannuation scheme that are particularly relevant for women and looks at the issues in the design of systems of Canada and the U.S. that are a particular cause of concern in those countries. This report does not design an income security scheme for women. Rather it attempts to present the issues relating to the situation of women that are relevant for any income maintenance system. These must be understood and taken into consideration, whether the decision is to design and implement a completely new income support system such as that envisioned by national superannuation, or to modify the existing system to enable it to better meet changing economic and demographic conditions now and in the future.
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Rosenman, Linda
Leeds, Marilyn
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download Reports and Proceedings No 42.pdf 4.34 MB Adobe Portable Document Format
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