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Leave SuperGold Card alone: Grey Power

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 5/07/2016
<span style="font-size:13px;">Grey Power has warned the government that if the SuperGold card is threatened it will face a voter backlash.</span> © File photo Grey Power has warned the government that if the SuperGold card is threatened it will face a voter backlash.

Grey Power members have gathered outside parliament with a warning for the government - mess with our SuperGold Card and you'll regret it.

They also delivered a petition asking parliament to ensure there's adequate funding for seniors to travel free on public transport during off-peak hours.

The pensioners are angry because there are moves by councils to charge for the SuperGold Card since the government capped funding.

In Auckland they have to buy a HOP Card for $10 and load it with $5 credit.

"The government is being short-sighted a year out from an election, and you're making us angry," said Christina Humphreys as she handed the petition to NZ First leader Winston Peters.

"We're the biggest demographic group in this country - and we vote."

Ms Humphreys, a former Tauranga Grey Power president, told the crowd of about 30 the SuperGold Card was being threatened.

"It might start in Auckland, but we know it won't stop there."

Mr Peters, who will hand in the petition, told them the government wanted to undermine the card's value.

"It is unfair and wrong that after seniors have paid a lifetime of taxes, this government wants to chip away and ultimately destroy what the SuperGold Card is all about," he said.

"By capping funding to councils for seniors' free off-peak travel, it will be only a matter of time before the councils and transport operators say the scheme is too expensive."

The government has denied it has any intention of killing off the card.

About 640,000 seniors hold SuperGold Cards, which Mr Peters introduced in 2007 when his party was part of the previous government.

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