Community members take a stand against retail giant
A MORANBAH mum has taken a stand against a multinational retail giant after it announced the closure of the town’s main clothing and homewares store.
Mum of three, Amanda Schy, launched an online petition to keep Target Country in the mining town just hours after the announcement was made to close more than 100 stores.
“I was annoyed and it made me feel like I needed to do something about this, for our community,” Ms Schy said.
“I felt some kind of action was needed and we needed to have our voices heard.”
Moranbah and Emerald are among 167 locations that will close Target stores within 12 months. While some stores are converting to K-Marts, Moranbah and Emerald stores will close permanently.
Ms Schy said the Target Country store was the only store in town that provided daily essentials like shoes, clothes and linen.
“Our town is very family orientated with lots of mums and families and kids,” she said.
“You need to be able to duck in and grab a jumper straight away or a pair of shoes if your thongs break.
“People need to have access to essential items every day and immediately.”
The mum of three boys said the store closure would force people to shop online for necessities, which wasn’t practical when it included up to a week’s wait, or force them to drive two-hours to Mackay.
“It’s not just the Moranbah community that will be affected, it’s Clermont, Dysart and Glenden, families that travel to use our shops and services and the families that live on surrounding properties that come in to town,” Ms Schy said.
The petition reached more than 1000 signatures within 24 hours and has since reached 2681.
Emerald’s Jennifer Taylor also started an online petition to urge business leaders to keep the “essential store” or at least “consider changing our Target to a Kmart store”.
“Living in the Central Queensland town of Emerald we have a lot of families that travel hours to get supplies each week,” the petition read.
“Our Big W is stripped of supplies each week as the store can’t keep supplies on the shelves long enough to accommodate the population that it services.
“We desperately can’t afford to lose this essential store.”
The petition has received 1000 signatures.
“I strongly urge Mr Rob Scott to listen to regional communities,” Moranbah’s Ms Schy said.
“Our community has supported you over many years so please return the favour and support us.”
A Target spokesman said despite the huge community effort, the decision to close had been made.
“We informed our teams at our Moranbah and Emerald stores last Friday and reached out to a number of stakeholders in these towns including both mayors immediately following this announcement to the teams,” he said.
“We appreciate that the actions outlined in our recent announcement will have a significant impact on many people, particularly Target team members, customers, and on regional towns where Targets will be closing.
“The decision to close these store was not one we made lightly, however we can confirm that this is a final decision.
“Our focus now is on supporting our team members and securing redeployment opportunities for them.
“We’re committed to doing what we can to support the teams through to the store closures next year.”