lose out to interstate ‘specialists’
check whether a local could do the job
jobs must be prioritised
Peter Gutwein must explain
why interstate workers are being given quarantine exemptions to work on
Tasmanian construction projects when there are locals who could do the job.
Shadow Minister for Building
and Construction, Jen Butler, said workers are being flown in to Tasmanian
sites at the expense of locals who need work.
“On one building site in
Hobart, local workers have been sent home for two weeks and joiners and cabinet
makers have been brought in from interstate.
“We understand a local
labour hire company has more than 100 workers on their books with those skills.
“With a 25% forecast decline
in residential building and 7% forecast in renovation work it is important that
Tasmanian workers are prioritised above interstate workers.
“That’s even more important
when it’s clear the skills are available locally.”
Ms Butler said the
complexity of construction projects was increased by having to segregate local
workers from fly in workers.
“We end up with the
ridiculous situation of local workers being stood down to protect their health,
while interstate workers step in.
“Local workers on these
projects don’t have ‘back up’ jobs. Work is being taken from them at a time
when they cannot afford financial stress.
“There’s no system to test
whether so-called ‘specialist’ workers being granted exemptions to enter the
state without going into quarantine are actually specialists, and whether a
local could do the same job.
“It is not the job of the
Emergency Controller to design that process. It is the job of the government to
make sure that safeguards are in place to protect workers.
“Peter Gutwein must explain whether there’s any process to assess whether a Tasmanian worker could do the job, before granting a special exemption to someone from interstate.” ‘
Jen Butler MP
Shadow Minister for Building and Construction