Labor’s plan to create a new low-cost ‘MySuper’ default account and boost the retirement incomes of average workers by up to $150,000 raise the stakes for working Australians in this election.

The stark choice facing working Australians at the Federal election will be highlighted through a new series of union radio ads that begin airing across the nation from Monday 2 August.

The ads inform voters of the differences between Julia Gillard and Tony Abbott and the danger for working Australians of the Liberals’ policies in opposing superannuation increases, introducing WorkChoices, cutting hospital funding and stopping trades training in our schools.

ACTU President Ged Kearney said working Australians should be aware that not only would the Coalition bring back the worst aspects of WorkChoices, but it would prevent workers from having greater financial security in retirement.

“We already know that Tony Abbott can’t be trusted on WorkChoices, but he also can’t be trusted on superannuation, hospital funding and trades training in our schools,” Ms Kearney said.

“A re-elected Labor Government will increase national superannuation to 12%, delivering an extra $108,000 in savings for the average 30-year-old worker. Tony Abbott opposes this.

“For a 30-year-old worker on an average wage the new MySuper default superannuation product would lift their retirement savings by $40,000.

“Together, these changes would deliver an extra $150,000 into the pockets of retired workers.

“Unions welcome the MySuper proposal and strongly support workers having access to quality super products, with low fees and all profits to fund members through Industry Superannuation. MySuper is a positive step towards workers keeping more of the profits not the big banks.

“But these much-needed reforms can only be delivered by a Labor Government.

“Working Australians also need to be aware that as Health Minister, Mr Abbott cut more than $1 billion in funding from hospitals.

“And Mr Abbott wants to scrap the Trades Training Centres in our schools which provide opportunities for young Australians to get an apprenticeship and a good career in the traditional trades.

Ms Kearney said unions will continue reminding working Australians of Mr Abbott’s record in the Howard Government as one of the strongest supporters of WorkChoices, and his plans to bring back WorkChoices-style individual contracts and to cut protection from being sacked unfairly.

The radio advertisements will air in a range of marginal electorates. They sit alongside national union television advertisements and intense grassroots activity taking place across the nation by the Your Rights at Work community campaign.