GLENN MAYCOCK claims he was denied a casual contracting role at Boyne Smelter Limited because of his father who was in an intensive care unit at a Brisbane hospital.
Mr Maycock has been unemployed since July last year so was all ears when he received a call from recruitment agency Manpower telling him to attend an induction at Boyne Smelters on Monday.
But the induction was short lived.
Mr Maycock says before he could step foot on site, a BSL manager told him in front of the security check-in he was being denied the role on the basis of his personal circumstances, namely that his father was in hospital fighting for his life following a major accident.
BSL general manager Joe Rea said the company's recruitment policy assesses applicants on two key criteria: skills and experience.
LISTEN: AMWU organiser Phil Golby explains discrimination in the workplace
Mr Maycock said it was none of the above that let him down.
"During the whole process of recruitment my father has been in hospital," Mr Maycock said.
"And, among other things, (he) had to have an operation to repair a fractured vertebrae in his neck and back and another to stop bleeding on the brain.
"I travelled to Brisbane twice in this time but still fulfilled all of my obligations to the BSL recruiting process."
Mr Maycock claims he was labelled by the manager a "reliability risk" and concerns were raised he would need to leave suddenly to see his father.
He claims he was told by BSL human resources what had happened was discrimination and illegal, and the manager would be spoken to.
AMWU Gladstone organiser Phil Golby was contacted by Mr Maycock on Monday.
"It is quite clear in the Discrimination Act that it is illegal to discriminate against any person for any reason whatsoever, and this case is a clear example of that," Mr Golby said.
"Nobody can actually foresee an issue that goes down the path of a personal injury or sickness of a relative."
Mr Rea said the company believed it had a fair process in place.
"If an issue is ever raised we will always take it as an opportunity to look into internally," Mr Rea said.
"It would not be appropriate for us to comment further on the detail of private discussions with a contract job seeker."
Mr Maycock said he needed the job "very, very, very" badly.
"I have a family; a wife and two kids and a father to attend to.
The Observer sought comment from the Fair Work Commission in relation to Mr Maycock's case without success.