'I'm terrified': Wives of Boyne Smelter workers worried

FROM OUTRAGE to sorrow to just plain worry, there has been an outpouring from the spouses of Boyne Smelter's workers.

Boyne Smelter Limited's general manager told The Observed this afternoon that a "significant number" of workers would face the axe soon.

Hundreds or workers were told the news today, while others, working the night shift, will be told tonight.

Yvette McNeill, a Gladstone mum, is worried her husband will be forced to look to other regions for work if he loses his job at Boyne Smelter Limited.

"Something that causes so much stress onto little families," she wrote on The Observer's Facebook page. "I'm terrified that my husband will lose his job and have to work away as that's basically the only thing going at the moment and he will miss out on our son growing up and that breaks my heart."

WIVES REACT: Many partners of Boyne Smelter workers have been left feeling uncertain about their future.
WIVES REACT: Many partners of Boyne Smelter workers have been left feeling uncertain about their future.

 

Kimberly Melksham, whose husband appears to be fly-in-fly-out worker, sympathised with the young mum, sharing her experience of FIFO life.

"My husband had to move 1600kms!!! He just made it home for the birth of his daughter! And misses out on milestones. It sucks! And he keeps putting in for jobs up here, but can't find anything," she wrote.

Yvette replied: I'm so sorry. I don't know how you do it. I couldn't imagine anything worse and that's what's terrifying me is that my husband will have to leave, and I feel like you're basically a single parent when you're FIFO! My hats off to you, you're strong.

Jessica Anne Gibson added: "We have three children to support. I pray this is not that case. Last thing I want is for my hubby to have to do FIFO."

Ati Everson called for action: "I think the family of those affected should start a petition with the government. It's so terrible that Queensland Government couldn't care less."

Laraine Bentley agreed: "Get together. Lobby local government and higher. When we sit back and take this it will keep happening. We need to stand up and be heard. Familes will suffer and they need to know."

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Mel Jones said: "My partner with a maintenance mob at QAL and Yarwun. It's already started filtering down the line, just no work! Just devastating for so many people."

Annie Williams said: "My son has just bought himself a car. This is the first permanent job he's ever had. It terrifies me that he could lose his job."

Asked how it would affect her, Mandz Thornton said: "We're waiting to hear. They're cutting 14% of production."

This announcement has been a reminder of the tough times many Gladstone residents are experiencing.

Boyne Smelter Limited employs just over 1000 people directly, and as many as 4000 locals have direct family ties with the company.

"Might be time to pull the roots up and leave," Luke Godbee wrote.

Beth Usher said, "Absolutely devastating for the community. Really sad day".

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