The Liberal Government is hatching a plan to change longstanding rules for a superannuation scheme for ADF personnel. This is causing significant distress and forcing experienced ADF members to make early plans to leave the services. This is against a backdrop of the ADF paying bonuses to try to keep people in the ADF.

The art director of the New Zealand Herald has landed the top design job at The Age, and will be called managing design editor, and have scope over all Fairfax publications.

The Centrelink 2006 Staff Poll has identified “an unacceptable level of bullying and harassment” in the organisation.

The Prime Minister’s $1.5 billion package of aged care “reforms”, announced on 11 February, was supposed to remove the topic as a potential election issue, but some aged care homes will actually lose money, because two key payments are being withdrawn and won’t be fully replaced by a new “simpler” payment. So what went wrong? Senior bureaucrats didn’t do their sums properly, too few people were consulted, and financial modeling inside the Department of Health and Ageing was simply wrong.

Today I, and I guess every other Pensioner customer of Telstra has received, or will receive, a letter dated 2 April (1 Apr would have been more appropriate!!), from John Rolland, Telstra Executive Director — Customer Sales and Service, changing the goal posts. Up to now we have been receiving a maximum of $12.25 per month, as pensioner rebate, made up of $3 reduction in the access fee (rental), the balance being deducted from call charges. (This is actually shown as a rental reduction of the full $12.25). Additionally we receive some benefit under Telstra Reward Options. Mr.Rolland now tells us that we can no longer have both and must choose between Pensioner Discount and Reward options. In my case I will lose approx $100 a year. I can handle this but to many Pensioners it will be another “straw on the back”.