Clive Palmer with his dinosuar at the Palmer Coolum Resort.
Clive Palmer with his dinosuar at the Palmer Coolum Resort. Richard Bruinsma

Palmer denies calling sacked resort worker fat 'c...'

UPDATE: LAWYERS for sacked Palmer Coolum Resort staff member Peter Yates say an agreement in principle has been reached to settle his claim over non payment of entitlements.

  Palmer Coolum Resort manager Simon Stodart confirmed "the matter has been resolved between the parties" but would answer no other questions.

     Gary Pinchen of the Melbourne-based A Whole New Approach, had earlier said while undertakings had been given to keep the outcome of the settlement confidential they would be "totally favourable" to his client.

   "But until the money has been received nothing has been resolved,'' he said.

"Agreement has been reached in principle, subject to confidentiality. It will be resolved once payment is received by Mr Yates' representatives.

Mr Yates was assistant food and beverage supervisor at Palmer Coolum Resort when he was sacked without notice or explanation on June 27.

Despite Fair Work Act laws that require he should have been paid entitlements worth $18,000 immediately or in the next pay cycle, up until today he had still not been paid.

Mr Pinchen said he was now in negotiation with the resort but wanted the matter settled today.

Mr Yates was sacked on the Friday of Mr Palmer's Fairfax Festival weekend and escorted from the premises after 17 years service to both the Hyatt and later Palmer resort.

He was provided no letter of termination or explanation for his dismissal, both required by the Act.

Mr Palmer today denied claims he had said 10 minutes before Mr Yates' dismissal "I want him gone, the one on the forklift. The fat c+++t".

At the time Yates was in control of the forklift, manoeuvring a crate of alcohol to a secure area.

Mr Palmer said today he had no recollection of saying anything of the sort.

"I don't use the word,'' he said.

After initially saying Mr Yates had been dismissed for dishonesty Mr Palmer retracted the allegation saying he had been sleepy and not sure of the question.

"I don't know about it,'' he said.

"Talk to Simon Stodart. I don't work there; I don't deal with the staff. If it's about our business talk to Simon Stodart. I have no say. I don't deny the allegations. I have no knowledge.

"I have absolutely never had a discussion with Peter Yates. That's the reality. Talk to Simon Stodart.

"Reports rubbishing the resort are destroying jobs on the Sunshine Coast.''

Mr Yates filed an unfair dismissal action under the Fair Work Australia Act on July 14.

Despite what had happened to him, he had held off taking action until two weeks into the three weeks he had to file the claim.

The reason - I felt loyal to the place, Yates said.

The resort had been a place where he and many other Coolum families had derived an income to support mortgages and raise families.

They worked for each other not a boss whether that was for the Hyatt or Palmer.

HAVE  you had dealings with Clive Palmer as a worker at the resort? Email us with your experiences at


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