6 December 2017
Adani’s claim that its Carmichael coal mine project will create 10,000 direct and indirect jobs has been referred to the national consumer protection agency, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).
Public interest legal practice Environmental Justice Australia has written to the ACCC, asking it to investigate misleading or deceptive conduct under the Australian Consumer Law.
EJA’s clients, Chris McCoomb and the Australian Unemployed Workers Union (AUWU), are concerned Adani is misleading jobseekers by suggesting a jobs bonanza is on the way.
“Adani has been telling jobseekers 10,000 jobs are on the way,” said Chris McCoomb, volunteer co-ordinator at the AUWU.
“Unemployed people are spending their meagre savings on training courses for jobs that don’t exist now, and may never exist.”
The letter to the ACCC provides evidence of mining training outfits relying on Adani’s claims to lure jobseekers into training courses.
“Plenty of evidence suggests Adani’s representations about 10,000 direct and indirect jobs are seriously flawed, yet the company continues to mislead people looking for work,” said David Barnden, lawyer at Environmental Justice Australia.
“People should not be misled into spending hundreds of dollars on mining industry training courses for jobs that just aren’t there.”
Evidence given by Adani’s representative and accepted by the Queensland Land Court said the mine would create 1,464 jobs. The Court said the methodology used by Adani to arrive at the 10,000 figure had significant shortcomings. The Australian Bureau of Statistics says the method used by Adani is likely to significantly overstate the impacts of projects.
The ACCC has a mandate to prioritise issues of significant public interest or concern and conduct detrimentally affecting disadvantaged or vulnerable consumer groups.
The AUWU is an organisation run by the unemployed for the unemployed. Formed in 2014, the AUWU’s mission is to protect the interests of the 2.8 million people looking for work and stop the government’s ongoing assault on Australia’s social security system.