Friday, March 30, 2012

Fit In or F@#$ Off

Inquiry into the use of ‘fly-in, fly-out’ (FIFO) workforce practices in regional Australia has open its hearing in Broome this morning.

Broome: A Community, not a Mining Commodity

Broome Community Members will gather outside the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Regional Australia inquiry into the impacts of FIFO operations on communities tomorrow.

“We are facing the largest onslaught of FIFO workers in the country of 8,000 workers if the Woodside gas refineries at James Price Point get the go ahead.” says spokesperson Jan Lewis.

“The town and its economy would be destroyed and that’s one of the reasons why there has been such strong protests against the gas refineries by the community, with more than 60 people arrested last year.” Ms Lewis said.

The Standing Committee has already heard presenters in Karratha telling of feeling as though they are under siege, schoolchildren being harassed and feeling threatened, and the damage done to volunteer-based community organisations by large scale FIFO workforces.

“We are a community, not a mining industry commodity and people in this town are very proud of the inclusive nature of our community, welcoming people from all walks of life and from all over the world and we want to keep it that way”. said Ms Lewis.
Recent studies have shown the increase in violence, drug availability and STIs in communities when large numbers of FIFO workers hit a town. House prices and rents in Karratha are astronomical.

“This town would be hell with a massive FIFO workforce, small and medium size businesses would fail with the competition for workers and massive rents would lead to overcrowding.” said Ms Lewis.

“The Federal Government can make sure Broome isn’t turned into a mining town by ensuring the Browse Basin gas is processed in existing facilities in the Pilbara.” concluded Ms Lewis.
Media Contact
Jan Lewis mobile no 0439 979 589 Photos available on request.
29 March 2012
The Terms of Reference

The Standing Committee on Regional Australia will inquire into and report on the use of ‘fly-in, fly-out (FIFO) and ‘drive-in, drive-out’ (DIDO) workforce practices in regional Australia, with specific reference to:

the extent and projected growth in FIFO/DIDO work practices, including in which regions and key industries this practice is utilised;

costs and benefits for companies, and individuals, choosing a FIFO/DIDO workforce as an alternative to a resident workforce;
the effect of a non-resident FIFO/DIDO workforce on established communities, including community wellbeing, services and infrastructure;

the impact on communities sending large numbers of FIFO/DIDO workers to mine sites;
long term strategies for economic diversification in towns with large FIFO/DIDO workforces;
key skill sets targeted for mobile workforce employment, and opportunities for ongoing training and development;
provision of services, infrastructure and housing availability for FIFO/DIDO workforce employees;
strategies to optimise FIFO/DIDO experience for employees and their families, communities and industry;
potential opportunities for non-mining communities with narrow economic bases to diversify their economic base by providing a FIFO/DIDO workforce;
current initiatives and responses of the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments; and
any other related matter.

The public hearing will open with a Welcome to Country offered by the Yawuru traditional owners.


  1. Not only FIFO's but immigrant "guest workers."

    Google "Woodside cheap foreign labour" and you get 140,000 results.

    Take your pick.

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