Communist Party of Australia

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Issue #1580      February 6, 2013

CFMEU campaign to share benefits of the mining boom

A national advertising campaign demanding a better share of the benefits of the mining boom – including jobs for Australian workers, more investment in mining communities and improved management of the impacts on manufacturing and construction – was launched in Brisbane and Perth on January 28.

The Campaign has also launched a new dedicated website: www.letsspreaditaround.com.au.

Produced by the Construction Forestry Mining and Energy Union, the “Let’s Spread it Around” campaign involves a national advertising campaign focussed on the stories of four real Australians and how the mining boom has impacted on them.

As the country moves into a federal election year, this campaign calls for better management of the mining boom to deliver more jobs for Australians, more investment in communities and better management of key segments of the economy such as manufacturing.

“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 Queensland Construction & General Division secretary Michael Ravbar said.

“While thousands of Queenslanders are losing their jobs, and unemployment has leapt to 6.2 percent, big mining companies want to bring in temporary [overseas] workers to build and operate mines. It defies common sense.

“The same is true for Western Australia, where unemployment has crept up to 4.3 percent, despite the boom, and youth unemployment continues to be a major issue, while big mining companies use claims of a skills shortage to bring in temporary workers for the mines,” said Mick Buchan, CFMEU WA secretary.

CFMEU Queensland Mining and Energy District president Stephen Smyth believes many mining communities are also missing out on the community resources they deserve.

“People in mining communities are suffering from the high cost of living, the lack of amenities and the strain on local infrastructure,” he said.

“And the high Aussie dollar, driven by the boom, is putting more and more pressure on manufacturing jobs, which is why we need to make sure local projects use local products, and Australian manufacturers get an even break.”  

Next article – AEU and Vic govt enter into negotiations

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