Robbie Katter compare labour hire issues to FIFO
Summary: The Fly In Fly Out issue drags on with debate in parliament over a bill to license all labour-hire providers.....
Mount Isa member Robbie Katter told parliament on Thursday the issue with the Labour Hire Licensing Bill 2017 was similar to FIFO.
“We have seen over the years in Mount Isa and Cloncurry a diminution in the permanent resident workforce and a push towards labour hire,” Mr Katter said
“We will hear more and more about blokes who have been permanent there for 20 years but who get put off for some reason or other and then they are forced into being contracted out at $10 an hour less with a labour hire company.”
Labour hire had “a massive presence in Mount Isa and Cloncurry, and I am not sure that we want it,” Mr Katter said.
The debate follows the bill passed last month to ban 100% FIFO which Mr Katter said only applied to two coal mines near Moranbah.
“Given that these sites were granted their 100% FIFO license by the previous Bligh Labor government, this bill only undoes some past wrongs of the ALP,” he said.
“The bill is targeted at the coal fields and falls short of addressing the issues faced by communities in the North West. We need more leverage to force employers to make an effort to employ a locally based workforce.”
Mr Katter said Glencore needs to ensure a re-opened Lady Loretta project employed a workforce based in Mount Isa.
“MMG at Dugald River should step up to the plate and guarantee at least some minimum employment limits for residents of Cloncurry and Mount Isa,” he said.
Meanwhile Labor candidate for Traeger Danielle Slade welcomed the FIFO bill.
“Growing up in Mount Isa Danielle knows how critical the support of a mining company can be to their local community,” Ms Slade said.
“This will mean a great deal for regional development in mining communities and at long last regional Queensland will see real benefits as a result of the industry created in their community.”
Ms Slade said the 100% ban meant employees of a mining company could decide if they want to fly in, fly out or drive in, drive out.
“The Bill will penalise mining companies who discriminate against prospective applicants on the basis of where they live.” she said.
“This is an exciting time not for just mining communities but for all towns and cities in regional areas”.