Dysart locals on the BMA scrap-heap
WITH 230 job losses imminent at BMA's Saraji Mine, a psychology expert has warned of the mental toll the waiting game could have on employees.
University of Queensland psychology Professor Jolanda Jetten said the effect of impending job losses could be "incredibly serious".
"I would imagine that at this stage it is concerns about who will be losing their job - will it be them or their colleague?" Prof Jetten said.
"It can be very divisive, when people start comparing themselves to others, evaluating on skills and knowledge and trying to find out where they stand."
A current Saraji employee, who did not want to be named, said some staff had already been told their time was up at the mine.
"At least 50 staff - supervisors, engineers, admin - will go from the site," he said.
"And they have started getting rid of them (Monday).
"We are (Enterprise Agreement) workers - they won't tell us a number with how many of us will go.
"I'm back at work (Tuesday) and we have had two massive meetings and we are all being kept very well informed."
The man said the mood on site was not ideal.
"It's a bit anxious, I suppose," he said.
"It is not good for a group as a whole when you suddenly declare a few will have to go."
Prof Jetten said when companies repeatedly cut staff, like mining companies have been doing throughout the downturn, it affected all workers.
"It is not good for morale for a company when these (job losses) happen repeatedly," she said.
"It does not show a lot of loyalty from the company to you.
"So, even those who keep their jobs probably won't be happy because they can't count on the fact that they will still be there in a few years."
Moranbah Traders Association president Trehan Stenton said his major concern for the region was where the jobs would go from.
"What we are trying to get clarity on is the impact of the workforce - whether the job losses will be of residential staff or FIFO," Mr Stenton said.
While Mr Stenton had not personally visited Dysart since the announcement, he said some of his colleagues had reported back to him.
"From what they said, I think people are worried - there is a degree of nervousness around what is happening," he said.
Isaac Regional Council Mayor Anne Baker said she was also concerned about the level of permanent residents affected.
"Council has not yet been informed how many permanent versus non-permanent residents have been affected and we are keenly watching this space," Cr Baker said.
"Of course, any reduction in employment is a blow to confidence - particularly when our region has recently witnessed workforce reductions."