Mining campaign gathering momentum
A CAMPAIGN to save Central Queensland's mining towns is quickly gaining momentum, former state MP Jim Pearce says.
Mr Pearce was in Rockhampton yesterday before heading out to Moura to talk to community leaders about setting up a local committee to tackle the issues impacting on the town.
Since announcing his involvement in the campaign late last month, Mr Pearce said community committees were up and running at Moranbah, Blackwater and Collinsville, and he would be in Dysart later this week to talk to a gathering there.
He said it was time to deal with increases in fly-in, fly-out workers, housing affordability, community support services and employment opportunities for young people.
“It's going really well,” Mr Pearce said of his lobbying role.
He said since he'd become involved, two of the big mining giants had contacted him.
Both times he advised them to talk to the community committees.
“I've had contact with two companies concerned with what I am doing,” Mr Pearce said.
“I suppose they think what I'm doing is not in their best interests.”
He said all companies should provide their workforces with an opportunity to live and raise families in the local community.
The campaign, funded by the mining union, is currently building up committees across Central Queensland and raising its profile in the media.
Mr Pearce said other options would be embraced further down the campaign trail.
However, he wouldn't disclose what these would be.
Previously Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche said he welcomed the opportunity to work with Mr Pearce. Mr Roche said the resources council was a long-term advocate for a fairer share of government revenues from mining being reinvested in mining communities.
However, he said it was wrong to suggest mining companies were walking away from the communities where they operated.
The former Member for Fitzroy says increases in fly-in, fly-out workforces, housing affordability, a lack of community support services and few employment opportunities for young people are hurting Central Queensland's mining towns.