THE community-based group formed late last year to primarily save wind-tower manufacturing jobs at Portland-based Keppel Prince Engineering has taken its campaign to the streets.
It has also signalled its intentions to take its campaign toMelbourneand hold rallies outside energy companies in a bid to persuade them to award manufacturing contracts to local companies instead of choosing cheap imports from overseas.
The campaign and community-based group known as Save Local Jobs was initiated late last year at a public meeting in Portland, organised by the Australian Manufacturing Workers’ Union.
It followed concerns that domestic wind tower manufacturers, including Keppel Prince, were losing major contracts to overseas companies based inChinaandSouth Korea.
Save Local Jobs spokesman Gilbert Wilson said on Saturday a petition was circulating throughout Portland’s business community urging the Federal Government and all political parties to take “immediate action to protectAustralia’s manufacturing industry and to preserve and enhance the existing skills base associated with it”.
“We need as many people as possible to sign the petition which will be presented to the House of Representatives, along with copies to the energy companies and the Victorian Government,” he said.
“At this stage, we intend holding a public meeting in Portlandi n mid to late February and have four guest speakers including Federal Employment and Workplace Relations Minister Bill Shorten.”
Read more in Monday’s Portland Observer.