Insulation business axes 100+ jobs
MORE than 100 people have been laid off from the South Grafton-based insulation company Power Results.
Power Results owner Shane Cutting said he had no choice but to sack the bulk of his staff following the Environment Minister Peter Garrett’s decision to axe the Home Insulation Program on Friday.
“We had no idea this would happen,” Mr Cutting said.
“Everyone is in shock.”
With the home insulation program under intense scrutiny in the past weeks, Mr Cutting said he knew changes were to be expected but he had no idea the minister would just scrap the program without any notice.
“Everyone is just appalled that there’s been no warning,” Mr Cutting said.
The first Power Results staff heard of the program being axed was through media reports on Friday afternoon, followed by a text message from Government at 5.04pm confirming the news.
With the company’s work source gone, Mr Cutting said he had no choice but to let go of at least 100 staff members straight away, including 40 people from Grafton. He said it was a devastating call to make.
“We employed a lot of really long-term unemployed people who will find it hard to find jobs,” Mr Cutting said.
The ex-Power Results staff have been referred to Centrelink where Mr Garrett said they would get immediate access to high-level support, including access to retraining support and help in finding another job as quickly as possible.
Power Results was one of the biggest insulation installation companies on the North Coast.
It was responsible for installing insulation into more than 8000 homes since the Home Insulation Program began last year.
Mr Cutting said the company took pride in its work and only used qualified and trained staff.
He said it wasn’t fair that his company and staff had to pay for the actions of the minority of ‘cowboy’ operators.
“Why is the government punishing the good, honest, hard-working Australians when they should be punishing the shonky guys?” Mr Cutting said.
“We did nothing wrong but we’re the ones paying for it.”
That is the key message Mr Cutting has given to the general manager of Power Results, Jo Doran, who was off to Canberra today.
Mrs Doran will join around 100 insulation installers from across the country who will march on Parliament House to protest the government’s treatment of their industry.
Mr Cutting said he wouldn’t be surprised if the group attempted to insulate Parliament House.
Power Results will kept a skeleton crew of around 15 people on staff until June when the Government’s revised insulation program is expected to be launched.
But Mr Cutting said he wouldn’t be rushing into it too quickly.
“I don’t think we’ll go up to the level we were before,” he said.
“The risk is just too great.”
Any Power Results customers with insulation concerns should call 1300 409 950.
“We stand behind our product,” Mr Cutting said.