Phillip O'Neill comments: What is the future of Hunter mining and its 13,000 direct employees

By Phillip O'Neill
Updated July 2 2021 - 2:51am, first published March 2 2020 - 1:00pm
Phillip O'Neill contributes to the Newcastle Herald
Phillip O'Neill contributes to the Newcastle Herald

Coal has its big moments. One was in a park at Branxton on Thursday October 6, 1988. I stood watching from afar, astonished, and cold, as a chilly afternoon wind carried dark clouds across the coal miners' union meeting. Speaker after speaker stood on the tray of a truck and said their piece. Loud speakers blasted obscenity and anger in a three-hour battle over work rosters. The final vote was close, the motion to accept a coal industry tribunal ruling that would permit companies to roster workers across all seven days of the week rejected by 1366 to 1230.

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