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Helensburgh coal miners continue strike action

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200 workers from Peabody’s Helensburgh Metropolitan Colliery went on strike again yesterday as the dispute around new enterprise agreements remains unresolved.

The most recent strike comes after workers walked off the job for 48 hours last week following two days of bans on production and limitations by the mine’s workforce.

The CFMEU claims the new agreement proposed by Peabody would freeze employees pay increases, putting their wages behind those at other operations in the region by more than 20 per cent.

"First, they offered zero per cent increase in pay over three years, then they made a counter-offer with minimal increases over years two and three," CFMEU south-western district vice-president Bob Timbs said.

"We've been in negotiations for a replacement enterprise agreement for the last six months, but we've come to an impasse.”

A Peabody spokesperson told Australian Mining the company is ”disappointed that the workforce has decided to take industrial action at this time”.

“Peabody Energy Australia has been working with the bargaining representatives at the Metropolitan mine in an attempt to negotiate a new Enterprise Agreement which reflects current market conditions, lifts productivity, reduces costs, enhances safety and provides greater job security for Metropolitan mine employees,” the spokesperson said.

“We remain committed to continuing discussions with the bargaining representatives and workforce.”

Peabody cut 42 jobs from the mine earlier this year as part of plans to slash 400 positions from its operations across NSW and QLD.

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