WITH plans to close three distribution centres operated by retail giant Woolworths in New South Wales and Victoria in 2025, the Transport Workers Union has stepped in to assist workers.
Plans on transition will begin after Woolworths announced that sites at Yennora, Mulgrave and parts of Minchinbury will close in five years as two automated sites open in Moorebank Logistics Park in Sydney by 2023.
TWU NSW branch secretary Richard Olsen said the site closures will come as a blow for workers at the sites but for those who can’t be redeployed to the Moorebank site their skills will transfer to other parts of the industry.
“It is not an easy thing for workers to hear that in five years time their place of work will no longer exist. But the TWU stands ready to help workers move on and use their skills and experience in other roles,” Mr Olsen said.
“The move towards automation in transport is closing down some areas of work but opening up others as the overall demand is expanding.”
The TWU said there will be redeployment for some workers to Moorebank and, through the supply chain charter it has with Woolworths, it will work with the retailer to “ensure safety and fairness in the new facilities for all transport workers”.
“It’s tough for workers to hear that there is a threat to their jobs at a time of uncertainty like this but we have time to prepare for these site closures.
“Our union has a deep understanding of the transport supply chain and can assist workers in moving on to other sectors.
“We will be working hard to help workers move into other logistics sectors in the transport supply chain,” Mr Olsen said.