A MAJOR union is blitzing regional areas with TV ads calling for better support of the mining, construction and manufacturing industries.The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union's "Let's Spread It Around" campaign is focusing on 35 battleground seats in this year's federal election, which Prime Minister Julia Gillard recently announced would be held on September 14.
With many CFMEU members located in regional seats, the union's advertising push aims to advocate both major parties to provide more support for workers.
"The mining boom has created opportunities for many Australians, but it has left many more behind, badly hurting job-rich sectors such as manufacturing, tourism and education," CFMEU national secretary Michael O’Connor said.
The commercials tell the story of four working Australians and their difficulties in struggling industries.
Mr O'Connor said the major parties should focus on sharing the benefits of the mining boom by working to reduce unemployment, provide more training and invest in the communities most affected by broader economic difficulties.
"Now the election has been called we want to see all parties commit to better managing the mining boom and the economy for ordinary Australians," he said.
Among the seats being targeted by the CFMEU is Corangamite, covering the western outskirts of Geelong, which Labor MP Darren Cheeseman won by less than 800 votes in 2010.
Rural seats including McMillan and Bendigo are also a focus for the CFMEU as the election campaign kicks off.