BHP failed Norwich Park workers: Fair Work

Fair Work Australia says BHP Billiton has failed its legal obligations to consult workers at the closed Norwich Park mine in Queensland.

The company was taken to Fair Work by the Construction, Forestry, Mining, and Energy Union after Norwich Park workers complained the company was not open about its plans for the workforce.

AAP reports Fair Work ruled BHP had not adequately consulted the mine's 340 workers.

Under its Fair Work's orders the company must now reveal job vacancies at its other mines to employees, and provide Dystart workers with company accommodation at nearby towns.

According to AAP BHP has also been ordered to consult with unions until June 8.

CFMEU district president Stephen Smyth said while it was disappointing the matter had to go to court, Norwich Park workers would now have "a bit more at hand" to help find new work and accommodation.

When the mine's closure was announced in April BMA chief Stephen Dumble said the decision "was not made lightly".

"The impact of last year’s floods, combined with lower coal prices and high costs, has resulted in an operation that is not currently viable," he said.

Dumble said industrial action had also impacted production at the mine, but it had been "unprofitable for some months".

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