Scroll To Top

Julian Hill MPFederal Member for Bruce

Julian Hill MP


Mr Morrison’s Liberal government wants to expand the cashless debit card to include all pensioners.

Stop the privatised cashless pension card

Mr Morrison’s Liberal government wants to expand the cashless debit card to include all pensioners.

That means 80% of your pension payment would be put on the privatised cashless card.

Unlike an ordinary bank debit card, it can only be used at shops approved by the government. So they can limit and control where, when, and how you spend your own money. You might also have to use a special checkout.

If this card scheme gets through, pensioners wouldn’t be able to:

  • pay cash to buy cheap food at the local market
  • buy second-hand goods
  • pay for a meal or a beer at the RSL
  • give money to their grandkids.

cashless pension card

The private company that operates the cashless debit card can see how much money you have, and where you shop. Information about the balance of your account and the kinds of things you buy are reported to the government.

Across Australia, people are now being forced onto the cashless debit card. There are five main trial areas so far, and the Morrison government wants to expand it to become “the universal platform” (Minister for Social Services, Anne Ruston, 2020) in “a nationwide expansion” (Prime Minister Scott Morrison, 2019).

This shocking scheme comes after eight years of cuts to the pension and attacks on pensioners by the Liberals. Mr Morrison isn’t on the side of pensioners.

The Morrison government thinks it knows better than Australian people how they should spend their money. The vast majority of pensioners manage their money perfectly well. They know where every cent goes.

The Morrison government has already wasted $70 million establishing the privatised pension control card, operated by a private company called Indue. The government has spent over $5,200 for each person currently on the card. That’s more than some part-pensioners get in a year.

At every turn, the Liberals try to find more opportunities to give their corporate mates more profit from taxpayers’ funds.

The public service, not corporations, should run the social security system and Centrelink for the benefit of pensioners who worked hard and paid taxes all their lives.

Labor will fight this government’s plans to expand this shameful cashless debit card and force it onto pensioners. And a Labor federal government would abolish the privatised card.

Sign the online petition

Please sign the online petition to put pressure on the Morrison government to abandon their privatised cashless pension card scheme.

empty wallet

Cashless pension card questions and answers

What is the cashless debit card?
It is not like an ordinary bank debit card – it can only be used at shops that are approved by the government.

What does the cashless debit card prevent you from buying?
The cashless debit card stops you from shopping at stores which sell any alcohol or gambling products. Unless the store has a special agreement, you will not be able to buy any goods at the store. It doesn't matter what you are trying to purchase. The cashless debit card will also stop you from buying cash-like products including gift cards.

Does the cashless debit card prevent you from going to a pub or a club?
You can only use the cashless debit card to buy meals if the pub or club has a special agreement.

Who operates the cashless debit card?
The cashless debit card is operated by a private company, called Indue.

Can the private operators see your personal details if you are on a cashless debit card?
Yes. The private company that operates the cashless debit card will be able to see how much money you have, and keep a record of where you shop and when. Information about the balance of cashless debit card accounts and the kind of things bought with the cashless debit card are also reported to the government.

How is the cashless debit card different from an ordinary debit card?
The cashless debit card looks different to an ordinary bank or credit card and it has a large and distinctive Indue logo printed on it.

Will people be able to tell I am on a cashless debit card at the checkout?
Yes. The cashless debit card looks different from an ordinary credit or debit card. Checkout operators and other people nearby will know you are using a cashless debit card. You might also have to use a special checkout to make your purchases.

Can I use the cashlessdebit card at a farmer's market or other local market?
You can't use the cashless debit card to make cash payments.This will make it hard to shop at markets or any shops that accept cash.

Can I withdraw cash from the cashless debit card?
No. In special circumstances, you might be able to get permission from Indue to access more cash, but you will need to explain to this private company why you want access to cash.

Does this mean I have to carry around two different cards with two PINs?
Yes. 80 per cent of your payment will be put onto the cashless debit card. 20 per cent will be put into an ordinary bank account.

Where is the cashless debit card operating?
The cashless debit card is already operating across Australia. People are currently being forced onto the cashless debit card in five main trial areas: Cape York in Queensland, Ceduna in South Australia, the East Kimberly in Western Australia, the Goldfields in Western Australia and the Bundaberg-Hervey Bay region in Queensland. The cashless debit card is already operating across the country for people who choose to go on it, or for people who move out of one of the four areas above.

What legislation does the government have in place for the cashless debit card?
The government has already given itself the power to force pensioners onto the cashless debit card – including people on the Age Payment, Carer Payment and Disability Support Pension in come cases.
Current laws mean pensioners can choose to use the cashless debit card.

Are pensioners currently on the cashless debit card?
Yes. People on pensions, including the Carer Payment and the Disability Support Pension are currently being put on the cashless debit card.

In what areas can Age Pensioners be forced onto the cashless debit card?
The government has tried to pass legislation through the Parliament that would force pensioners in five (six if you include the NT) areas across the country onto the cashless debit card. Currently, age pensioners can only be forced onto the cashless debit card in Cape York.

Does the government want to roll out the Cashless debit card across Australia?
Yes. Scott Morrison and his Ministers have said they want to see the cashless debit card used across Australia.

Can someone get off the cashless debit card?
A person who is placed on the cashless debit card has to apply to the department to have the amount of money that is quarantined reduced. This includes providing information about how you manage your personal affairs. In some places people also have to apply to a panel of community members to get permission to have the amount of money quarantined on the Cashless debit card reduced.

How much has the government spent on the cashless debit card?
The government has spent over $70 million setting up the cashless debit card technology so far.

Protecting Pensioners Taskforce

The Federal Parliamentary Labor Party has established Labor's Protecting Pensioners Taskforce. The Protecting Pensioners Taskforce will connect with pensioners from around Australia, listening to how the Liberals and Nationals' cuts have impacted them. The taskforce will also examine the impact of the government's future plans for pensioners including concerns about the cashless debit card.

MENU