Axed skills training program 'cost 30 jobs'
CAIRNS has been robbed of 30 bus drivers and diesel mechanics because a skills program has been axed, the Transport Workers Union says.
Members of the Electrical Trades Union also met Cairns MP Gavin King yesterday to discuss claims by Premier Campbell Newman that there was an oversupply of Ergon workers in the Far North.
ETU Far North organiser Stuart Traill said there was a shortage of Ergon employees and the region could not afford to lose any more workers.
“At this stage we haven’t got any commitment on job cuts but we did make it clear to Gavin if there are job cuts and we are not consulted we will ramp up our campaign against him and his government,” he said.
Mr King said he was not aware of any planned job cuts by Ergon, but he would organise to meet management to clarify the position.
The Queensland Government last week ended the Skilling Queensland for Work Program as part of its cost-cutting drive.
The union says the program’s axing means Cairns will lose 10 bus drivers and up to 20 diesel mechanics.
“Cairns is crying out for drivers and mechanics and the youth unemployment situation is catastrophic,” TWU’s north Queensland organiser Janine Aitken said. “And what do these fools (the Government) do?
“They have just thrown another 30 youngsters on the scrapheap.”
Cairns Institute director Prof Hurriyet Babacan has expressed concerns the public sector job cuts could exacerbate the city’s homeless problem.
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