The condition and safety of a workplace’s food can quite often go unnoticed, while there are many regulations prescribing the safe preparation, storing, transporting and serving of food, it is a health and safety issue that can be conveniently avoided until the workforce either speaks up, or gets ill!

Construction workers at the QCLNG gas export plant construction site on Curtis Island are claiming that the kitchens at the worker’s camp and the food it is producing is unsanitary and unhealthy and as a resulted have voted to walk off the job until the issues is addressed.

Phil Golby from the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union says workers claims workers are being served undercooked and maggot infested food.

“There was hair found in the food, I was also shown a photograph of chicken legs and chicken wings that were definitely not cooked”.

The Construction company concerned is calling the strike “ridiculous” and “illegal”, however the workers and union are calling it a “occupational health and safety issue”.

Industrial action of any kind can be polarising, and often politics and other ulterior motives are at play when action is taken, regardless, the construction workers on Curtis Island deserve healthy and safe food as is prescribed by legislation in Queensland and hopefully this industrial action will cause those responsible to take a look at their standards as well as more over sight by regulators.

There could be a number of reasons such substandard food is being prepared at the QCLNG gas export plant, training (or lack of), policies and procedures either incomplete or not being followed or budgetary restrictions.

Given the Construction workers involved in this industrial action would have all completed their white card training, they have been trained in and are familiar with hazard identification and reporting, a skill which was no doubt involved in this situation. Now if those preparing the food in question had the same level of training, this type of incident won’t happen again.

For the ABC news article follow the link below:
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-12-12/construction-workers-at-gas-plant-strike-over-food-safety-fears/5151730