Royal Commission must ensure Robodebt debacle is never repeated

In welcoming today’s announcement of the Robodebt Royal Commission, Anglicare Australia Executive Director Kasy Chambers said:

“This Royal Commission is not just an opportunity to learn who knew what and when. It an opportunity to make sure the Robodebt debacle is never repeated again.

“From the start, this system had no human oversight.

“The community sector, financial counsellors, and most importantly, the people affected by the system were ignored over and over again when they told their stories.

“Lawyers, judges, and members of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal were brushed off when they warned that the system was illegal.

“The wrongs and personal pain caused by Robodebt could have been avoided if the Government has listened to those who know. At this Royal Commission, decision makers will need to explain why they dismissed almost every piece of feedback and advice.

“It should also look at debt collection across the board. Anglicare Australia’s own research shows that many of the debts levied on people are caused by Centrelink errors.

“This is an opportunity for the Government hear from those who have been through the system – and work with them to create a better system,” Ms Chambers said.