Craig Allen at Kershaw Gardens to protest the Auizon announcement that the Rockhampton maintenance facility is to be closed and jobs made redundant.
Craig Allen at Kershaw Gardens to protest the Auizon announcement that the Rockhampton maintenance facility is to be closed and jobs made redundant. Chris Ison ROK120717crally3

'These are not new jobs': Union leader slams Aurizon's CQ plan

AURIZON is promising 200 jobs will relocate to Rockhampton with a $6.4 million refurbishment of its administration building.

However union workers aren't convinced by the rail giant's latest move.

Rail, Tram and Bus Union organiser Craig Allen today said the announcement won't generate new jobs, it's simply the company "moving their deck chairs around".

He said the 200 jobs already exist within Aurizon, meaning over the coming years workers from around the state will be faced with relocation into Rockhampton.

Mr Allen said the move comes as somewhat of a peace offering from Aurizon to Rockhampton locals following the announcement of workshop closures and train driver redundancies earlier this year.

"Obviously if Aurizon wanted to make an announcement that made the people of Rockhampton happy it would be the Rockhampton workshops will not be closing," Mr Allen said.

"Ultimately Aurizon knows the community was angered through the announcement of the workshop closing, and that they were on the nose with Rockhampton.

"These are not new jobs, these are existing positions so it doesn't do anything for the Rockhampton workshop people."

Mr Allen said the news of the 200 jobs proved interesting considering 40 families in the administration building had recently been given the option to relocate to Brisbane.

"Now they are talking about relocating them back to Rockhampton," he said.

"Merely what they (Aurizon) are trying to do is make out they are a good corporate citizen but really what they are doing is moving their deck chairs around."

Mr Allen said the union would be in contact with Aurizon over the coming days.

"We'll be engaging with Aurizon shortly to figure out what their thinking is and what the roles might be."

Talking exclusively to The Morning Bulletin yesterday, Aurizon chief executive officer Andrew Harding said the Murray St refurbishment would modernise the building and grow capacity.

He said relocating city workers to regional areas "makes sense" as it brings them closer to the rail giant's operations.

Another spokesperson from Aurizon said the company had been very clear about relocating the 200 roles from Brisbane and other metropolitan centres to Rockhampton.

"This refurbishment will also provide jobs for local tradespeople. We will be pleased to brief the union," the spokesperson said.