Tag Archives: Closing

The job bloodshed in Australia continues as companies restructure to cut costs | Instant News

Thousands of jobs are steadily waning across Australia as companies continue to restructure their operations to cut costs in an effort to offset the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and sustain profits.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), the unemployment rate is currently 6.8 percent, down from a 22-year high of 7.5 percent in July. The monthly ABS jobs survey, however, downsides the true unemployment rate by counting as employed people who have worked only one hour a week.

A more reliable indicator of the current unemployment rate is provided by Roy Morgan Research. According to the September survey, 1.83 million people were unemployed or 12.9 percent of the workforce. An additional 1.33 million or 9.4 percent are not working – that is, working but looking for more hours of work. In total, 3.16 million large, 22.3 percent, were unemployed or under-employed.

Part of a Qantas aircraft [Credit: pxfuel.com]

The true unemployment rate is also obscured by the Liberal government’s JobKeeper scheme where employers initially receive $ 1,500 per fortnight to keep employees on their books, even when they have been withdrawn. The government scheme was introduced in April, when COVID-19 restrictions were put in place and for fear the depression looming over unemployment would trigger a social boom.

The unemployment rate will jump dramatically as JobKeeper’s payouts close at the end of March next year, which have been reduced to $ 1,200. According to Natasha Hawker, director of Employees Matter, the end of JobKeeper will expose workers to “redundant bloodshed.” He told the media that for smaller businesses— “for whom cash flow is so important” —JobKeeper “has been like a ventilator but oxygen is going to shut down soon, and some businesses will not survive without life support.”

Employees now fired will also face increasing financial hardship as the federal government moves to end Job Seekers’ unemployment benefits that were imposed in the first months of the pandemic, doubling previous social security payments. Job Seeker’s Benefits have now been cut by $ 300 to $ 815.70 two weeks, and are returning to the old poverty rate of $ 282.85 a week’s payout from January.

Job Seekers’ pay is being cut to force unemployed into low-paying jobs and the drastically deteriorating conditions that have been created during the pandemic. One of them is the harvest of agricultural products, which the government has reduced travel restrictions on COVID-19 so that the agricultural industry can access it. cheap backpacker power.

The “redundant bloodshed” that has lasted since April has left thousands of jobs destroyed across the university sector.

According to the most recent figures compiled by the National Tertiary Education Union on Sept. 25, nearly 12,500 permanent jobs had been cut off at Australian universities or 10 percent of the entire university workforce before COVID-19 which numbered around 130,000. The union estimates that 90,000 permanent, fixed-term and casual tertiary jobs have been performed eliminated in the last six months.

Many employers are leveraging COVID-19 to restructure and implement workplace changes planned before the pandemic, including moving face-to-face customer service to online services and paving the way for further job outsourcing.

For example, in September, Suncorp, a Brisbane-based banking and insurance group, announced it would permanently close 19 stores in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria and one business center for a cost of 550 jobs. Most of the shops have been closed since April. A Suncorp spokeswoman said the company “continues to adapt the team to our new operating model.”

Thousands of jobs have been fired at aviation sector, led by Australia’s largest operator, Qantas, despite pocketing millions of dollars in government aid. In late August, the company announced the demolition of 2,400 in-house field staff positions via outsourcing. This is on top of the elimination of 6,000 jobs earlier in the year. Australian Virgin, recently acquired by looter firm Bains Capital, has announced another 150 layoffs above the 3,000 that were cut in August.

Other layoffs include:

Travel agent Flight Center announced this month it would close 91 stores across Australia, destroying hundreds of jobs. The cuts come on top of the 300-store closure and the company’s 4,000 cut in sales and support jobs in the past six months.

As part of a global restructuring, Chevron would cut 230 jobs, or 10 percent of the workforce, in Australian operations. This follows the elimination of 1,500 jobs by companies in July.

Australia’s largest meat processing company, JBS, last month announced it would cut 600 jobs at its Dinmore plant in Queensland, or a third of the workforce of 1,700. Consulting firm Accenture will cut up to 250 jobs at the Australian operation, as part of an international restructuring to cut 25,000 positions worldwide.

Opera Australia has plans to fire more than 25 percent of its permanent workforce and terminate many other contracts. The company employs more than 300 artists and permanent staff, and provides employment opportunities for up to 1,000 people a year.

That NRL (The National Rugby League) will cut 25 percent of staff, including head office positions, in restructuring to save $ 50 million annually.

That Australian Department of Defense in August it said it would cut 111 jobs across various divisions, including scientific and engineering specialists.


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Cineworld will close all US, UK and Irish sites this week, sources said | Instant News

FILE PHOTOS: An overview of an empty cinema foyer at Cineworld in Hemel Hempstead as the number of coronavirus cases increases worldwide, in Hemel Hempstead, UK, March 17, 2020. REUTERS / Matthew Childs

LONDON (Reuters) – Cineworld, operator of the world’s second-largest cinema, will close all of its sites in the United States, Great Britain and Ireland this week due to the impact of the coronavirus crisis, a person with knowledge of the situation said on Sunday. .

Reporting by Kate Holton, written by Estelle Shirbon; Edited by Toby Chopra


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The reports of school closings are “baseless”, said Saeed Ghani | Instant News

Minister of Education Sindh Saeed Ghani addresses a press conference in Karachi, October 02, 2020. – Screengrab Facebook / SaeedGhaniPPP

KARACHI: No decision has been taken to close schools in Sindh, provincial education minister Saeed Ghani said on Friday after several areas in Karachi were under micro-smart lockdown.

“The reports about school closings are baseless,” he said, during a joint press conference with PPP leader Waqar Mehdi.

The Minister of Education said that citizens must follow the coronavirus security protocol issued by the government.

“We have implemented a micro-lock for now. Society should not force the government to go into a complete lockdown,” said the education minister.

The development was carried out after several areas in Karachi were locked up by micro-smarts following an increase in coronavirus cases, including Creek Vista Apartments Block A, Phase VIII, DHA, Askari III, Civil Line, Saddar, and Manghopir.

Sindh registered 400, 311 and 361 coronavirus cases on September 29, September 30 and October 1 respectively, up from 242, 278 and 251, on September 25, 26 and 27.

The province has recorded a total of 137,467 coronavirus infections, more than 2,500 deaths and more than 130,000 recoveries, according to official statistics.

Meanwhile, the minister said that the government is considering appealing the decision announced in the Baldia City factory fire case – which resulted in the death of 260 workers.

“Some people have not been charged in the case,” said Ghani.

Speaking about the Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan (MQM-P), Ghani said that his party issued the same statement as Prime Minister Imran Khan.

“The prime minister was so indifferent to the Sindh people that he did not, even once, come to ask about their condition,” added Ghani.


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Local Travel Medicine Clinic Closes After 30 Years – NBC Palm Springs – News, Weather, Traffic, Latest News | Instant News

A local business closes after 30 years due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Rancho Mirage Travel Medicine Clinic has been providing vaccinations to residents for decades. The man behind the clinic, in a last act of kindness, will donate medical equipment to be used in future humanitarian missions. Edward Lister is a registered nurse who has been providing vaccinations to the people of Coachella Valley for 30 years. His company, Travel Medicine Clinic, offers people who are considering more involved trips, vaccinations against exotic diseases. “He actually stopped suddenly, just didn’t see any international travelers, nor do I see him in the near future. I guess I have to act on my age and start to retire, “said Lister At 75, Lister says he was not thinking of shutting down, but Covid-19 changed that very quickly. He said he is proud to have served the community and is sad to say goodbye. “When I see them, it’s like a family, I spend about an hour with them, advising them to stay safe while traveling. I think they are afraid that they will no longer receive care, “added Lister.” Over the years, I have received vaccines against cholera, typhoid, yellow fever and meningitis. I don’t really know exactly where I’ll be going at this point. I know there is a clinic in Loma Linda, but that is a problem, ”said Jeff Crider, director of communications at IMA Helps. Jeff Crider has been a Lister patient for years, worried where the community won’t go as the clinic closes. Before closing, Lister will donate medical equipment from the clinic to assist in future medical humanitarian missions. “IMA Helps is a non-profit organization which organizes medical humanitarian missions mainly in Central and South America. The material that Edward provides to us will be material that we, in turn, can donate to some of those hospitals where we work overseas that need this type of material because they don’t have it, which ‘They are missing,’ said Crider. Lister says he will miss his patients and has been given some farewell advice to tackle this pandemic. “My patients or travelers, many of them are like family and it’s hard to say goodbye. it’s hard to say, but I think when we get a vaccine, things will look up, we have to wear a mask and stay away and that sort of thing. everyone has to do it so that we can get back to what we used to do, “said Lister. Lister tells NBC Palm Springs that there are other travel clinics hooked up there, you can find them by visiting the International Society of Travel website here: https://www.istm.org/.

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New Zealand aluminum smelting closed, reducing 1,000 jobs | Instant News

New Zealand aluminum smelting closed, reducing 1,000 jobs

By John Braddock

July 15, 2020

International tycoon Rio Tinto announced on July 9 that it would close the New Zealand Aluminum Smelters (NZAS), known as the Tiwai Point smelter, within 18 months.

Jointly owned by Rio Tinto and Japan’s Sumitomo Chemical Co., the smelter directly employs around 1,000 people and supports 1,600 further jobs in the Southland province. This is a large corporation bordering the city of Invercargill, a population of 56,000, and contributing $ NZ400 million to the regional economy, more than 6 percent of its GDP.

In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, the company said the strategic review had “shown business could no longer survive given the high energy costs and challenging prospects for the aluminum industry.” The company has given notification to energy supplier Meridian Energy to terminate its energy contract which expires in August next year.

Closure is a part of increase attack on employment and livelihoods a major part of the workforce. The economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic is very severe. With a sharp recession overshadowing this quarter, unemployment is expected to reach nearly 10 percent this year. Even before the closure was announced, the Southland District Council had estimated 5,000 regional job losses related to the pandemic, and a local unemployment rate of 9.5 percent.

NZAS reported a net profit of $ NZ220 million in 2018. However, the feasibility of smelters has been questioned over the past decade due to falling metal prices, rising electricity costs, and excess capacity that has caused smelting plants to be closed worldwide.

Last year the smelter announced a $ 46 million NZD loss, with CEO Stew Hamilton saying it had been hit by a 15 percent decline in global prices. Pressure on aluminum producers has increased with the slowdown or collapse of industries such as car manufacturing, aircraft production and aerospace, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Factory closure has broad implications. NZAS is the largest electricity consumer in New Zealand, using about 12 percent of the country’s electricity. Contact Energy, the facility’s second electricity supplier, is now considering closing the Taranaki Combined Cycle thermal power plant in Stratford. Within hours of the announcement, fleeing investors had wiped out more than $ 2.8 billion from the value of the electricity company listed on NZX.

That Sydney Morning Herald reported “continuing uncertainty” around the future of three Rio Tinto aluminum smelters in Australia, also claiming pressure from energy prices, which constitute about a third of their costs. Rio Tinto Australia CEO Jean-Sebastien Jacques warned last August that the smelter, which employs thousands of people, was on “thin ice.”

The cost of NZAS electricity transmission has increased from $ NZ40 million in 2008 to $ 65 million last year, according to Hamilton. But a spokeswoman for the electricity company Vector told an investigation last November that the company only paid around 5 cents per kilowatt-hour, about a quarter of the price of power paid by consumers.

Hamilton rejected the criticism, saying that the price was “wholesale discounts like you would get from any industry.” The company continues to ask for lower prices from state and private electricity companies.

A worker, Team Talamahina, told me Goods that he expects closure, but still finds himself “shaken” from the announcement. His father, Iki, has worked at Tiwai for nearly 40 years, while Tim has been there for 20 years. “I thought I was ready for it, but no, not really. Reality came and I thought, Wow. “

Seth Nips, a local college student said it would be “very terrible,” because people would lose their homes, and it would be difficult to find work because many small companies would also lose their jobs. Noel Ruffel, a retired builder, said it was a “real tragedy” and “there will be lots and lots of people who will suffer.”

The EU union is cooperating with the closure as it has done, together with the Air Line Pilot Association, with thousands of redundancies in Air New Zealand. European Union spokesman Joe Gallagher said the Labor-led government had “the opportunity, post-COVID-19, to show the way forward for an appropriate, fair and just transition, including allowing workers to retrain or move back.”

These are meaningless words. Unions know that the government will not do anything to protect work and the reality is that thousands of workers will only go to work.

Finance Minister Grant Robertson flatly stated that there was “a certainty” about the announcement from Rio Tinto. He stated that it was “a very sad day for Southland but there are also opportunities attached to this.” This is nothing more than a vague observation that more can be done “to extract value from the agriculture, aquaculture and manufacturing sectors in the region.”

Really don’t care about the fate of smelter workers, who are funded by the trade unions Daily blog posted a comment by John Minto heading: “Goodbye and welcome to the largest bludger company in New Zealand.” Minto suggested the government could fund “opportunities for creating jobs that are environmentally friendly,” ie subsidizing “green” businesses.

Multi-national companies have been supported by successive governments, led by the Labor Party and the National Party, with price concessions, tax exemptions and weak environmental practices.

Eu’s statement included a sad request for Rio Tinto to “think about the legacy he wants to leave as a company.” Gallagher told TVNZ that the company had “the duty of caring for employees and their families” and had to consider options for keeping smelters open.

Such statements are attempts to sow illusions among workers and hinder any real struggle against layoffs. The aim of Rio Tinto, like other large companies, is, primarily, to make a profit. The main shareholders do not care about the lives that will be destroyed by the closing of Tiwai Point.

The mass redundancy that occurred throughout the country, after the government gave tens of billions of dollars in subsidies to businesses, is an accusation against the capitalist system of private ownership of the means of production, which is maintained by trade unions.

To fight for decent work and living standards, workers need to establish ranking committees, apart from trade unions, to connect with other parts of the working class in Australia and face similar attacks internationally. Such struggles can only advance to the struggle for a workers’ government to implement socialist policies. This would include nationalizing large industries, such as aluminum, under the democratic control of the working class, to reorganize production for social needs, not personal gain.

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