The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) has demanded an explanation for Rio Tinto’s decision to fire permanent workers from one of its central Queensland hard coking coal mines.
CFMEU Mackay district president Steve Smyth said 10 employees were sacked on Wednesday at the Hail Creek mine, and that another 56 permanent workers will follow.
Smyth said Rio Tinto’s actions have breached a commitment made at the company's annual general meeting last week about the use of casual labour.
“Our concerns are with the behaviour shown by the company this week and their disregard for their permanent employees, this could be the start of more to go,” he said.
Rio Tinto has rejected the union’s claims and says both contract and permanently employees will be affected, but will not give specific numbers.
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