Another Day, Another Chance to Kick FIFO

CME refuted the WA Police Service’s claims that the increase in reported domestic violence was partly due to fly-in, fly-out (FIFO).

The Chamber of Minerals and Energy of Western Australia (CME) refuted the WA Police Service’s claims that the increase in reported domestic violence was partly due to fly-in, fly-out (FIFO).

“If there’s evidence, data or research – share it.  The odd anecdote, isolated example, urban myth or neighbourhood gossip is not evidence,” said CME Chief Executive Reg Howard-Smith.

“Who shot JFK? – a FIFO worker.  Where is Harold Holt? – doing FIFO in the Pilbara.

“FIFO is getting the blame for just about everything that’s wrong in modern society and resources sector employees are getting sick of the stigma and being judged,” said Mr Howard-Smith

CME acknowledge that it is human nature to be sceptical and judgemental of things we don’t understand, however the stigma and demonisation is damaging to the more than 60,000 employees in WA doing FIFO.

“Despite some recent assertions that there may be a higher prevalence of mental health issues associated with FIFO employment, research is yet to find any substantial evidence in support of such claims,” said Mr Howard-Smith.

The extensive Commonwealth Parliamentary Inquiry into FIFO practices received no evidence which supported a claim that mental health issues were any higher in the FIFO worker population than in the wider workforce.  The Inquiry ran for 18 months, received hundreds of submissions, visited numerous sites and held dozens of public hearings.

“The incidence and impact of domestic violence is a serious issue for the community of Western Australia to deal with.  We need an evidence-based approach to tackling these broader societal problems rather than apportioning blame without evidence,” said Mr Howard-Smith.