Calling on Urgent Support for Opal Workers

Latrobe City Council is calling on the Federal and Victorian Governments along with Opal to support a considered transition for the region following the announcement at Maryvale Mill this morning.

Council continues to stand by our community following the news that white paper operations at the Mill will cease due to lack of wood supply. Job impacts are still to be released as the Mill’s focus will shift towards manufacturing cardboard fibre packaging.

The Mill has been a cornerstone of Latrobe City’s economic landscape for over 85 years, with reduced operating capacity expected to be felt far and wide.

For every job at Maryvale Mill there is a flow on externally of another job in their supply chain. Without support it is expected there will be a significant impact to workers, their families and the wider local business community.

Opal workers are a skilled workforce that offer transferrable skills to other industries. Structural Adjustment Packages are now required, these could provide local workers with vital support including training and job opportunities for industry transformation.

Council calls on the Victorian Government to fast-track their commitment to establishing the State Electricity Commission in Morwell and associated renewable energy projects to allow for a timely transition.

Mayor of Latrobe City, Councillor Kellie O’Callaghan acknowledged that this news created further uncertainty for the local community.

“While our community has been aware of impending closures and changes to local industry, the uncertainty that these job losses at the Mill places a further need for urgent support,” said the Mayor.

“Latrobe City has been built on a backbone of strong industry and manufacturing and we understand the direct and indirect impacts these changes have on our community.

“While this work has been continuing for some time through our transformation, Council is committed to advocating on behalf of our people, amplifying our community’s voice to all levels of government seeking their support.

“We look forward to learning more from the Victorian Government about their recently announced support package and how this will assist workers. Council would like to thank them for their initial support during this time.”

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