July 9, 2020

Jetstar abandons Newcastle workers

The TWU calls on Jetstar and their parent company Qantas to reverse their decision to close down jobs and workplaces at Newcastle Airport for the local families, businesses and the region. 

Jetstar is shutting down around 200 regional jobs at the Newcastle Airport. 

Jetstar has told local workers that it will close its Newcastle Cabin Crew base and Maintenance Base at Newcastle Airport, as part of massive job cuts announced by their parent company Qantas.

Richard Olsen, State Secretary of the Transport Workers’ Union in NSW said, “Cabin Crew who are based at Newcastle are already not working, and have now been abandoned by the company. Members were provided with two-weeks-notice, and there has been no support offered by the company since.” 

“Families have had their lives destroyed by this announcement. Families who work at Newcastle Airport, for example Cabin Crew married to Engineers working at the same site. Families whose members have worked for many of the 16 years that Jetstar has been in Newcastle, who have put down roots, built up lives and have a home, and a mortgage,” Mr Olsen said.
Jetstar has offered to let some workers go to Melbourne or Brisbane to follow their jobs, however no relocation costs have been offered. 

Mr Olsen said, “Today we ask Jetstar the question, why abandon regional jobs? If Jetstar must transfer workers, why not Sydney where Jetstar are using labour hire companies to fill jobs these members could do? Jetstar are not committed to maintaining fulltime jobs closer to home for these workers.” 

Jetstar has uncaringly fobbed off workers with a declaration that their facilities at Newcastle Airport “no longer suited operational needs”. 

Jetstar and their parent company Qantas have questions to answer about how they are keeping their workers safe and their ongoing treatment of staff. The Qantas CEO is very quick to cut jobs and hang workers out to dry. 

The TWU has called for ‘aviation keeper’ for all aviation workers to be extended beyond September to give workers and companies assurances while planes effectively remained grounded.

Present at today’s media conference:

  • Newcastle based Jetstar Cabin Crew, TWU Members
  • Richard Olsen, State Secretary, Transport Workers’ Union
  • Mick Forbes, Transport Workers’ Union Newcastle and Northern Sub-Branch
  • Mick Pieri, Assistant State Secretary Transport Workers’ Union
  • Kate Washington, MP for Port Stephens
  • Nuatali Nelms, Newcastle Lord Mayor
  • Meryl Swanson, Federal MP for Paterson
  • Pat Conroy, Federal MP for Shortland



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