Power station workers donate $4k to Oaky North protestors
GLADSTONE power station union members have raised thousands of dollars for the locked out workers at a Glencore-owned mine in north Queensland.
There are 190 miners at Oaky North coal mine near Mackay who have been locked out of the site since July, protesting Glencore's proposed workplace agreement.
After helping settle Gladstone Power Station's enterprise bargaining dispute, union delegate Andrew Lockwood said 150 of his fellow employees were generous when asked if they wanted to donate to the Oaky North miners.
The Gladstone Power Station workers also donated more than $4000 to employees at the Griffin coal mine in Western Australia who have been "out of the gate" for 150 days late last year.
"Their plight is similar to ours, they had their EBA terminated too," the Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union delegate said.
Mr Lockwood said NRG workers were "lucky" to settle the dispute late last year before they needed to strike.
After almost a year of negotiations and several workers protests, the FWC approved the new Enterprise Bargaining Agreement that workers voted in favour of in September.
"It's a terrible situation (at Oaky North) and that's what we were preparing for here at NRG," he said.
"There's a lot of stress on people and I felt it especially because as a union delegate you feel responsible for all of your members.
"It's not easy when it starts to affect people's families."
Mr Lockwood said workers and union delegates had a more positive outlook, rather than the "doom and gloom" they expected during the negotiations.
"It's been good, we're getting back to normal, doing our jobs, no one is playing games. That's all we wanted to get back to doing our jobs."
In October Oaky North miners voted down Glencore's second proposed enterprise agreement 170 - 2.