Opinion divided on CFMEU heatwave proposal
A Gympie Times article published earlier this week on the CFMEU'S heatwave workplace proposal has drawn mixed community reactions.
As most of Queensland suffered through temperatures in the high 30s since the heatwave started last Sunday, the Union doubled down on their view that outdoor workers and labourers should be looked after in extreme heat.
The 35C Tops Work Stops campaign centres around workers having rights to seek temporary respite when temperatures reached 35C or 28C and 75% humidity.
CFMEU President Royce Kupsch said the organisation decided on a 35C Tops Work Stops campaign after collecting data and analysing workplace incidents related to heat stress.
Mr Kupsch said workers affected by extreme temperatures should be able to look for shaded areas or take regular breaks.
"We're not saying work should stop completely, but go to another area where there is less heat and humidity," he said.
"We know this will slow things down and cost more money but the alternative is so much worse."
Readers took to social media to weigh in on the topic.
"My husband works in what is essentially a big shed. The owner doesn't want to put money into anything so there's no cooling. Yesterday after working in almost 40C heat, my husband had his boss come out of the air conditioned office and made a dig at how he smelled. I think that's pretty rude" - Amber Burton
"People getting a bit soft these days." - Blake Gear
"Go and ask blokes out west and see what they think..." - Tyson Hillcoat
"Guess it all depends on if they still get paid for not working....some people like eating and living in a house" - Stanislav Kar
"As long as they put tools down for 10-15 minutes every hour rehydrate and get into shade they shouldn't need to not work..." - Joel Isaacson
"I have quite a few guys on sites in Brisbane and I am constantly reminding them to ensure they take breaks and even knock it on the head if they need to, but my boys just keep pushing it for fear of being labelled weak. So I now have one lad down today with heat stress. Not only do you need to watch your water intake etc but make sure you watch your mates too" - Adrian Mamet
"Some people have no choice. If the boss doesn't say 'tools down' they're stuck out there in the heat and humidity for prolonged periods of time." - Joan Robinson