Just how vulnerable are our employees?

A RECENT study that named Wingham as one of the most disadvantaged places to live and highly susceptible to job losses has been received with caution by the Wingham Chamber of Commerce.

The latest employment vulnerability index from the universities of Griffith, Charles Darwin and Newcastle found Wingham had one of the highest potential for job loss in the country.

Grahame Nash, treasurer of Wingham Chamber of Commerce and a member of the Manning Valley Economic Development Board said you cannot look at Wingham in isolation of the entire region.

He said Wingham is more like a dormitory suburb of the Manning Valley and that residents of the town are not solely reliant on local employment.

"You have to be cautious of raw statistics," said Grahame who considers the local economy as reasonably resilient. According to Grahame the global financial crisis didn't hit Wingham as much as it did Taree.

Grahame said he has seen a trend towards more people with money moving into the area, many of these are semi professionals who move to Wingham for the lifestyle and who enjoy shopping locally.

But while Grahame is confident of Wingham's economic standing he said spending by the government on infrastructure would enable the town to be better placed to withstand any economic shock.

"State and federal government has to commit to infrastructure spending within the region," said Grahame who cited better health and educational facilities (especially Tertiary) as high priority. "We have to build the skills base and have facilities to attract growth oriented business," he said.