Yesterday’s decision by Visionstream to sack 60 workers on the spot who were engaged in the rollout of the National Broadband Network is another damning indictment on the capacity of Employment Minister Eric Abetz, Tasmania’s unions say.
Yesterday a spokesman for Mr Turnbull said, "It was heartening to see Visionstream taking steps to ensure that workers are given adequate notice of the changes and is taking steps to retrain and redeploy workers."
“This is a nonsense. The workers were sacked on the spot with no notice,” Unions Tasmania secretary Steve Walsh said.
“In this year alone we have seen at least 200 workers sacked from the NBN project in Tasmania. This represents more than 6% of jobs lost in Tasmania in the last 6 months.
There are 3,200 fewer jobs in Tasmania since the start of the year.
In the critical northern region there are 200 fewer jobs now than when the Liberals came to office. Visionstream’s announcement yesterday included the sacking of 20 Launceston based workers.
“Mr Abetz must clarify if he agrees with Mr Turnbull’s characterisation of Visionstream’s actions as ‘heartening to see’.
“The Liberals came to office promising to turn around job prospects for Tasmanians. Instead they’re Tasmanian based employment schemes have failed and they are now winding them up to be replaced with nothing.
“We are now seeing a very disturbing trend of unemployment in the State continuing to rise, the number of full time jobs continuing to fall and the workforce participation rate collapsing.
“The only solution Eric Abetz has is to denigrate workers who fronted up to Labor’s Fair Work Taskforce hearings to have their real concerns about dodgy work practices like the sham contracting arrangements of the NBN recognised.