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Statement attributable to Jo-anne Schofield, President, United Workers Union:

“Today’s decision ends a huge grab of tax revenue by the very wealthy, in favour of funding Federal Government services that workers and the community need, including better aged care, a better NDIS and a better early childhood education and care sector.

“Since it was introduced by Paul Keating’s Labor Government in 1991, compulsory superannuation has provided a valuable safety net to support workers in their retirement.

“However no-one can seriously argue that superannuation balances of more than $3 million are meant to support workers in their retirement – they are a tax dodge for the very wealthy that the system was never designed for.

“United Workers Union welcomes closing a tax loophole that allows billions of dollars to be redirected to aged care, disability support, early childhood education and other essential government services.

“It is also important to remember that low-paid workers, particularly women with broken work histories, accumulate super that is far less than the $162,000 average for men and $129,000 average for women being bandied about.

“In major industry super fund HESTA, the median super balance for women is $29,000.

“Spare a thought for these low-paid workers when we hear the hue and cry from the very wealthy and their proxies when the tax dodge is closed.

“While this change does nothing to improve low super balances of low-paid workers, it addresses an unfair systemic bias to the very wealthy, and evens the playing field somewhat by providing billions in additional funding for essential government services that workers and the community rely on.”