Anglo brings in strike-breakers to undermine workforce

Published: 1 Sep 2016

Anglo American has escalated the situation at their German Creek mine by advertising for a new workforce while existing employees conduct legal and protected industrial action.

The mining giant has engaged labour hire company WorkPac to advertise for Excavator Operators to replace the striking workforce, with the firm resorting to cold-calling known coalmine workers and offering them a sweetheart deal better than those offered to existing employees.

Under the offer, the new contract workers are being offered $60 per hour, plus and extra $2 per hour back paid if they stay on for 3 months, along with free accommodation and meals.

CFMEU Mining and Energy Division Queensland District President, Stephen Smyth said that bringing in industrial mercenaries shows just how little Anglo cares about their existing workforce.

“It’s not right that workers can take legal and protected action to fight for better pay and improved conditions, then get replaced by industrial mercenaries,” Mr Smyth said.

“Anglo is offering a better deal to these new industrial mercenaries than they are willing to offer to their own employees.  That just isn’t fair. 

“If Anglo have the money to pay inflated wages to strike-breakers, then they should come back to the table and negotiate in good faith to support their existing employees instead of sneaking around behind closed doors and using a labour hire company to employ a shadow workforce.”

The CFMEU have had more than 16 meetings with Anglo trying to reach agreement on simple commitments around job security, pay, and workplace health and safety.

Mr Smyth called on the community and local MPs to show their support for the local workforce.

“These are outsiders being brought in to take away jobs from local workers.  Anglo is taking money away from Middlemount families and that will hurt the community,” Mr Smyth said.

“Michelle Landry has just been re-elected promising to protect local jobs.  Now she needs to stand by her word and not let local jobs be undermined by Anglo.”