Norwich Park union members picket the mine entrance in protest to stalling negotiations.
Norwich Park union members picket the mine entrance in protest to stalling negotiations.

Strikers protest at Norwich Park

WORKERS have vented their frustrations over stalled negotiations with resource giant BMA at a protest line outside Norwich Park this week.

Waving placards condemning “scabs” and proclaiming Dysart as a “community, not a camp”, the union members maintained the line for 36 hours, the longest work stoppage since protected industrial action began last month.

The Single Bargaining Unit, comprising the AMWU, CFMEU and ETU, has been involved in negotiations with employer BMA since November, and CFMEU vice-president Glenn Power said the unions had the same level of commitment from workers now as eight months ago.

“We’ve made slight progress but quite frankly, we’ve still got a long way to go,” Mr Power said following the latest round of meetings with company representatives.

“They (BMA) know we’re serious about these negotiations, especially with the steady escalation of work stoppages.

“We will do what we can to bring these negotiations to a desirable conclusion.”

A BMA spokeswoman this week confirmed the company was continuing to meet and negotiate with the unions and believed progress was being made.

“But despite this, BMA continues to receive notices of industrial action,” the spokeswoman said.

“This action is unnecessary, causes financial harm and does not help to finalise an agreement.”

Mr Power said the company’s production levels were down 31% between April and June.

But BMA said production would continue as normal.

“Our mines will continue to operate, although at a reduced capacity during stoppages,” the spokeswoman said.

Total overtime bans have been enforced at seven Bowen Basin mines and stoppages are expected to continue.

Day and night shift stoppages at Gregory and Crinum mines are expected to extend more than 20 hours on Sunday and Monday.

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