Families impacted by business preference for casuals

BUSINESSES increasingly hiring workers as casual rather than permanent full or part-time is impacting Fraser Coast families who may not be counted as unemployed.

Mission Australia Queensland state director Phil Schultz said underemployment, counted as those looking for more work hours, was a major issue for the Fraser Coast.

"In particular, the casualisation of the workforce is having a real impact on individuals and families doing it tough," he said.

"Fraser Coast businesses that have hit hard times - such as the tourism and retail sectors - often struggle to provide full-time opportunities and instead only offer casual or part-time positions.

"So job-seekers are struggling to get enough hours to make ends meet."

Last week, Fraser Coast TESS chief executive officer Lance Stone called on community and government leaders on the Fraser Coast to come together to address underemployment and said it must be viewed the same as a public health issue.

Readers took to the Chronicle website to call for action.

"High unemployment has been a feature of this region for many years and has got worse in recent years as what industry we had has closed down or relocated," commented Hervey Bay user Vagabond.

"Industry of any size needs transport to move materials in and product out, sadly our region lacks good infrastructure, again if any thing it has got worse. Until we get a good road, rail and air facilities, we won't get industry of any size."

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