UNEMPLOYED transport workers and their supporters have protested outside a company in High Wycombe which is seeking to bring in overseas forklift drivers, with claims the jobs were not advertised widely in Australia or offering unemployed locals the two days training required for the job.
More than 50 activists held placards and flags demanding Northline provide decent jobs with fair rates and training.
Transport Workers’ Union WA branch secretary Tim Dawson said the company had a history of poor practices towards its workforce and was simply trying to pay drivers less.
“Northline doesn’t have any enterprise agreements so their model is a low wage regime,” he said.
“Here in WA transport workers are losing their jobs every day due to the downturn in the economy and young people are crying out for training.
“Yet here we have a company which wants to bring in overseas drivers which is just another way of keeping wages down and exploiting its workforce.”
Mr Dawson said the union would ask companies that used Northline to transport their goods to demand the company provides properly paid and safe jobs.
Colin Butler, an out of work Perth truck driver who has a licence to drive a forklift, said there were people available to do the work.
“There are drivers who could do this work,” he said.
“This is just another example of companies cutting back on drivers’ pay.”
Northline has been contacted for comment.