MINING contractor Barminco has cut more jobs and is pushing ahead with an average 10 per cent wage cut at its Tasmanian operations worth millions to the local economy.
The Australian Workers Union confirmed yesterday 10 people across the company’s operations at the Metals-X Renison tin mine had been informed they were being made redundant in the last two days.
Assistant branch secretary Robert Flanagan said the employees were across a number of functions in the mine.
10 Barminco workers have been made redundant at Renison tin mine
“It’s fair to assume this is another part of their cost cutting,” Mr Flanagan said.
In September The Advocate reported the company was looking to cut $18 million across its Australian operations, with the Tasmanian reductions part of achieving that figure.
The AWU entered into negotiations on behalf of employees earlier this month when an alternative cost-cutting proposal was put forward by Barminco.
This happened alongside discussions on a new Enterprise Agreement.
However, Mr Flanagan said the Barminco employees overwhelmingly rejected the company’s offer.
He said the proposed agreement included a number of changes including reduced rates of pay.
“The union understands the company intend to proceed to unilaterally reduce pay rates, and employees should receive notification shortly,” he said.
The AWU has made applications to both the Fair Work Commission and Federal Court in relation to the reduction in rates.
The matter is expected to go to the Federal Court in December, with the Fair Work Commission yet to confirm a date.
“We are challenging the company’s right to reduce rates like this,” Mr Flanagan said.
“They are currently referring to an average cut of 10 per cent, but that varies depending on people’s occupations.”
He said the option for an application for protected industrial action was open to employees.
“We will be talking to members over the next week to get direction in relation to where to from here,” he said.
Barminco was contacted for comment.
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