A SIGN OF HIS TIMES: Mark Freeman stands behind the sign he erected yesterday at a busy Sunshine Coast overpass, revealing his frustration at not being able to get a job in the booming mining industry.
A SIGN OF HIS TIMES: Mark Freeman stands behind the sign he erected yesterday at a busy Sunshine Coast overpass, revealing his frustration at not being able to get a job in the booming mining industry. John Mccutcheon

'Hunt for mine jobs waste of time'

ALL Mark Freeman has to show for his $6000 investment in securing a mining industry job is a maxed out credit card, an overdue mortgage and mounting ancillary bills.

Under pressure to meet mortgage repayments now two months behind and with rates due dating back three years he gambled all on a job in the boom mining sector, its alluring promise of a big pay packet and the chance it offered to hang on to the home he loves.

The sign-writer by trade paid $3500 for a dump truck course and another $1000 for a generic coal induction ticket and poured more money into road trips to Mackay, Rockhampton, Blackwater and Mount Rawdon where he tried to gain entry to the industry through the front and then back door.

"I even tried to see if I could get lucky, talking to workers at the pub but you could have fired a shot in there. They were all at the mines.''

Mark offered to do one company's vehicle sign-writing in return for the magic three-month experience that he said was the real ticket to the industry but like the resumes he has sent, received no reply.

A letter he wrote to mining magnate Clive Palmer addressed via his Coolum Hyatt has gone unanswered.

"There are poor people doing courses now who are wasting their money. I've sent resumes but hear nothing back. You need to know the superintendents. They're the hirers and firers,'' he said.

While Mark believes there is still "heaps" of work available for those with the magic minimum three months experience, others aren't so sure.

Allan Hayes, of independent Mackay-based employment company Hayes HR, said while you could not get casual work without generic mining induction tickets, they didn't guarantee a job by a long shot.

"The best thing about an employee is their reliability, stability and worth ethic. Mine construction jobs are coming. There will be strong, steady growth," he said.

But Mr Hayes said getting into the industry was "no easy game".

Meanwhile, Mark Freeman is at the end of his tether, yesterday mounting a banner on the Buderim-Mooloolaba Road overpass warning of the pitfalls of the job chase.



LNP: '400 give up looking for jobs across Wide Bay'

premium_icon LNP: '400 give up looking for jobs across Wide Bay'

New figures show unemployment rate rises

Development in breach of town plan, which council allowed

premium_icon Development in breach of town plan, which council allowed

REVEALED: The approved Bargara development we've all forgotten about

WORKPLACE INJURY: Man sues firm for $1m after ladder fall

premium_icon WORKPLACE INJURY: Man sues firm for $1m after ladder fall

Bundaberg man sues painting firm after falling off ladder

Local Partners