Under the pump
DARREN Swile was dressed in his uniform and on his way to work when he was told he had just been sacked.
Theresa South was working the morning shift in tears, knowing it would be her last and she would soon be fired.
They are two people who have come forward after they were among six staff laid off without notice from their casual jobs at the United Petrol station in Rockhampton Rd, Yeppoon, on Friday.
Darren, a Yeppoon father of three, said he was contacted by the manager who told him the new owners, who also own the United Petrol station in Lower Dawson Rd, Rockhampton, had taken over the business and he was no longer needed.
"It took me 10 months to find another job after the floods and now I've been told I was sacked on my way to work," he said.
"I need another job - I have three kids and a wife to support. Now my wife is supporting me."
Theresa said she worked hard to get regular customers and she was disappointed how she and her colleagues were treated.
"We all have families and we were all fired that day," she said.
"The new owners came in and shut it down and that was it.
"I told a lot of the customers, a lot of them were regulars, and they were not happy with it."
In December, a week before Christmas, employees from the Rockhampton store protested after six people were fired when new owners took over.
The owner of the Rockhampton station, who was not named, told The Morning Bulletin at the time it was a family-run business and with five full-time staff, he could not afford to keep the casual employees.
"I'm trying to make the business grow and improve the working style and everything," he said.
"When we are set up I will definitely try to bring the local employees back.
"I'm really sorry that I can't do more at this time."
Darren said he was a casual employee and he just had to accept there was nothing he could do.
"I've been looking for more work, but of course it's going to be tough," he said.
A manager of the Rockhampton station, who did not provide his name, yesterday confirmed new owners had taken over the Yeppoon store and some people were fired.
He said no one had asked for their jobs back and invited those laid off to re-apply for a position.
"No one came to me asking for their job back," he said.
"I would hire them if they ask for a job."
The Morning Bulletin approached United Petroleum yesterday for comment but did not receive a response by late yesterday.