Fed Govt IR ads 'backfired badly'

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Fed Govt IR ads 'backfired badly'

A new survey suggests the Federal Government's multi-million dollar workplace advertising campaign has 'backfired badly', with workers indicating they are now less positive about WorkChoices since the beginning of the ads.

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A new survey suggests the Federal Government's multi-million dollar workplace advertising campaign has 'backfired badly', with workers indicating they are now less positive about WorkChoices since the beginning of the ads.

Commissioned by political activist group GetUp!, the survey found 45% of respondents say that the multimillion dollar ad campaign has made them feel less positive towards the policies, while only 23% say it has made them more positive.

Of the remainder, 24% say the ads have made no difference, while 8% aren't sure.

GetUp! Executive Director, Brett Solomon, said that, perversely, the more they spend of our money, the less likely they are to be re-elected.

'Australians know bad policy when they see it,' Solomon said. 'And wasting millions of dollars of taxpayer money on trying to convince them otherwise has only backfired badly on this Government.'

Lib voters not happy either

Not surprisingly, the ads were least effective with Labor voters. However, even among Coalition voters, the ad campaign had a positive impact on less than half (45%). Remarkably, a full 18% of Coalition voters said the ads made them feel less positively towards the Government's IR policies.

With the Coalition struggling in the polls, it must seek to neutralise the IR issue with two key groups: undecided voters and Labor voters who are not union members. However, the Roy Morgan survey indicates that the ads are creating a backlash for the Coalition among these target demographics.

Among voters who are undecided, three times as many say the ads make them feel less positive (37%) as more positive (12%). And sentiment among non-union Labor voters is almost as overwhelming as among Labor voters on the whole, with 63% of non-union Labor voters saying the ads made them feel less positive and only 10% making them feel more positive.

'The Government is spending the Australian people's money on so called 'information ads' that have proven to be nothing more than own-goal propaganda,' Solomon said.

The survey was conducted nationally among 623 respondents aged 18 years and over, by telephone over the period of 8-9 August.

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