Families' mounting concerns after Cockatoo Coal redundancies

WHILE the families of redundant Cockatoo Coal Baralaba employees struggle to pay bills and buy groceries without an income, they have a more alarming concern on their minds.

One employee's wife, who wished to remain anonymous, told The Morning Bulletin her husband's mental health was something she was concerned about as he struggled to find work after being made redundant.

She said the term "redundancy" came with a negative connotation, especially in small mining communities and for men who had "worked hard and paid taxes their whole life".

"We have worked hard all our lives to end up at this stage of our lives in this mess at no fault of our own," she said.

"When you see the hopelessness, desperately them applying for one job after another, desperate and looking for employment, of course this is going to take a psychological toll on them.

"It's the fact these people won't get their jobs back but also they have nothing to live off.

"It is really taxing psychologically and emotionally that they can get a job and they are laid off in a couple of weeks.

"There are families having to put their houses on the market, they have no money to buy groceries.

"We have literally exhausted our savings."

She said a lack of local representation and communication from state and federal members was disappointing and left families in the dark as to when they could expect their financial entitlements or support.

"It's basically the lack of political representation and support that speaks volumes about the character and personal integrity of the politicians representing Central Queensland," she said.

"(They) are allowing this dreadful situation out here at Baralaba to continue without one word of hope, without one word of inspiration, without one word of representation."



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