Baralaba mine lays off 40 workers

BARALABA'S Lisa Proefke let out a sigh of relief when she learned her husband wasn't one of the 40 miners let go at the Baralaba mine this week.

The 34-year-old mother of three and other residents of the Baralaba community confirmed to The Morning Bulletin yesterday that Cockatoo Coal Limited had sacked 40 miners in the last two days.

It was believed that miners turned up for their shift yesterday and were handed a letter detailing whether they were still employed or not.

Lisa, a bartender at the Baralaba Hotel, said her husband received a letter during his shift on Tuesday night that confirmed he still had a job.

"My husband has worked at the Baralaba mine for three and a half years," she said.

"We were both so happy when he got the letter telling him he was safe because we have three young kids and we moved out here for his job.

"It's so sad to think about all the people who turned up to work and received a letter telling them they no longer had a job. I personally know a few people who were laid off, it's just so sad and it's going to impact the community.

"Everyone knows everyone here, we're a tight knit community and it's really upsetting."

President of the CFMEU Mining Division for Queensland Stephen Smyth said the Baralaba mine had a non-union collective agreement between employer and employee.

"If these miners have been notified by a letter then that is really unacceptable to drop a bombshell like that," he said.

"I don't know the fine details of their contracts but unfortunately for them when there's an agreement in place between the employer and employee without the union, this type of thing happens."

The Bulletin contacted Cockatoo Coal Limited yesterday but the company did return our calls.


Cockatoo Coal Limited has owned and operated the Baralaba Central mine since 2008.

The mine is located 3km north of the township of Baralaba.

Current Cockatoo Coal Limited Qld projects include the Baralaba Mine; projects in the Bowen and Galilee Basin and the Surat coal projects in the Surat Basin.

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