FIFO mining work gives us a lifestyle
MY FAMILY chose FIFO for the lifestyle, not the money.
Honestly, when you take out all the added costs of FIFO, financially we are not a great deal better off.
However, our lifestyle is!
I spend far more (and far better) time with my family under this arrangement.
If not for FIFO, we would still be living in another state and Queensland would not benefit from my career choice.
There are an estimated 10,000 workers on the Sunshine Coast, working under similar FIFO arrangements. A lot of them no doubt have also moved to Queensland, bringing their lives and income with them.
Can Queensland afford to lose these opportunities, which would have a significant financial impact right across this state?
We significantly contribute time and money to several communities.
Where my family lives we pay rent, school fees, buy groceries. Our car was purchased there and is serviced and repaired locally.
The community I fly in and out of benefits from my fuel, car parking, service and repair, occasional accommodation and meals, training courses etc.
The town where I work also gains though the sale of fuel, groceries, rent and other incidentals.
There are many people that benefit from my choice of career. How many jobs may be jeopardised should these opportunities be limited or removed entirely?
As for massive incomes; our choice is one of lifestyle so my partner does not work and is therefore available for our children at all times.
Is my work arrangement so different from workers who travel into large cities for their careers?
They also commute (often long distances and over extended times) to work, and yet do not spend money in the area where they work.
Do you propose to punish those workers? Force them to live in the city that they are using and abusing by creating traffic congestion, increased load on services.
Many "mining towns" would still be underfunded backwaters if it weren't for the FIFO workers. They all need to eat, sleep, purchase fuel, service and repair vehicles, wash and buy clothes.
Another little publicised fact missing from this argument is that Queensland mines have, in recent years, been seriously lacking in suitably qualified workers.
Not only do these rural towns not contain sufficiently qualified personnel, but in many cases neither does Queensland.
Would it be better that these mines not operate due to insufficient manning, rather than bringing in remote workers?
By all means, offer residential arrangements to these workers but it is not reasonable to try to force them into a residential arrangement.
If I am not able to maintain my current lifestyle (which is made possible by FIFO work), I will simply take my family (and income) back from where I came.
My family has no interest in living in the country, no matter how attractive the offer. I have turned down better paid positions in other remote areas as they specifically preferred residential employees.
FIFO work arrangements are definitely not for every one but, like any other career, if it doesn't fit you or your family then you need to recognise that it may be time to change.
Most importantly, isn't it the workers and families who should decide on whether or not the "hardships" are bearable?
Why do politicians and do-gooders think they have the right to decide what is right for my family?
We are all very happy, thank you! If you think we are suffering, why don't you actually ask the people involved, rather than attempt to dictate to them?
The reason this discussion is public in the first place is typical of the great Australian "tall poppy syndrome".
We see others with things that we may want. We don't necessarily want to endure the discomforts to get these things ourselves. So we take uninformed pot-shots at those people who do.
The message here is a simple one: if you want what the FIFO workers have, do the necessary training and find your own opportunity.
If you don't, then leave us alone.