Westpac Bank is transferring yet more jobs to India, in a move that has made at least 188 employees redundant. This is on top of the thousands of jobs already lost by big Australian companies sending jobs overseas, with many call centre jobs being sent to India.
To add insult to injury, Westpac employees who were losing their jobs then had to train their replacements. Worryingly, for Westpac customers, the Indian recruits were described as “highly incompetent”.
The Indians were brought here on temporary visas to be trained by Westpac staff. The question has been raised whether the Indians were being paid the same wages as Australians while they were here (required by law) or whether they were being paid at the level of Indian wages.
The Courier Mail has even obtained a document in which a high-ranking Westpac official admits that sending Australian jobs overseas was “an important element of the Westpac Group’s strategy”.
We understand that companies will always look for ways to cut costs; but, in turn, they should understand that if they destroy Australian jobs by sending them to foreign countries – and, as a result, hurting tens of thousands of Australian families and damaging the Australian economy – that true blue Australians will regard them as anti-Australian.
It may be difficult for Australians to boycott various companies who engage in this practice, whether due to lack of alternatives or worry that they will be damaging the jobs of those workers still employed locally. What may be needed is some form of government action that will make it uneconomical for uncaring corporations to rip the heart out of their workforce and send jobs overseas. What form that would take will have to be worked out. We don’t know what form such an action may take, and we are aware that it should be carefully worked out, and not be rushed into; however, what we do know is that any companies moving jobs to the Third World, or moving factories to the Third World, are doing Australians no favours.
Westpac is not the only corporation engaged in this practice, but is just a recent example in a long line of uncaring companies stripping jobs from the grasp of Australian workers – and it has been happening for years.
Westpac is Australia’s oldest bank, one that has been supported by millions of Australians for almost two hundred years, but now they are sadly losing the respect that they once had. Their actions are very disappointing, to say the least.
We call upon Westpac, and all other companies who are destroying Australia’s future by sending jobs overseas, to terminate their foreign contracts and to bring back Australian jobs to where they belong – Australia.
Helen Pow. “Kicked in the teeth: Sacked Westpac workers train their Indian replacements”, Sunday Mail, 22 January 2012
Freya Petersen. “Australian bank asks outgoing staff to train cheaper Indian replacements: report”, Global Post, 22 January 2012
Luke Hopewell. “Union fires up over Westpac outsourcing”, 9 November 2011
Renai LeMay. “The Westpac dialectic: IT outsourcing and warring narratives”, Delimiter, 14 November 2011
Renai LeMay. “Outsourcing to impact 188 Westpac jobs”, Delimiter, 9 November 2011
“India calling: Westpac, Qantas to outsource jobs”, Indian Express, 3 October 2006