Today I stand united with workers and the unions that represent them in their fight against worker exploitation at Newcastle Port.
The decision to displace Australian workers with a fly-in crew from Singapore to unload ships at our port could threaten safety and locks local workers out of jobs.
We have highly-skilled workers available to do this work right here in Newcastle. There is absolutely no justification for bringing in foreign labour to do this work.
It’s shameful to disengage an Australian crew and employ foreign workers with the sole purpose of driving down pay to increase profits.
This is not how we do business in Newcastle.
There’s been a long history of port users working together to ensure the health and safety of all workers and this must continue.
Even if these actions are technically legal, they are morally reprehensible and will only contribute to the race to the bottom on wages and conditions.
The Turnbull Government has done all it can to replace Australian seafarers with foreign workers being paid low wages on Australian ships and now we see it spreading to our docks as well.
It’s time the Turnbull Government acted to back Australian industry and protect Australian jobs.