Melbourne newsagency fined for underpaying worker

13 August 2010

The operators of a Melbourne newsagency have been fined more than $26,000 following a prosecution by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

David McPherson Black, of Malvern East, has been fined $4620 and the company he owns, DMB Investments Pty Ltd, has been fined a further $22,000 in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court.

Through his company, Black owns and manages a newsagency located at 348 Glen Huntly Road, Elsternwick.

Magistrate Amanda Chambers imposed the fines after Black admitted he was centrally involved in his company committing three breaches of workplace laws by underpaying a casual retail assistant at his newsagency $4697 from April, 2007 to January, 2009.

The employee, aged in her 50s, was paid a flat hourly rate of $18 for all hours worked - but was entitled to up to $21 an hour on weekdays and Saturdays and up to $33 an hour on Sundays.

“The court is required to impose a penalty that serves as a clear deterrent to other employers that non-compliance with minimum employment standards is a serious matter and that compliance with award obligations is of paramount importance,” Magistrate Chambers said.

Magistrate Chambers also ordered DMB Investments to back-pay the worker the money she is owed.

“The failure of the defendants to make any payments towards rectifying the underpayment over the past 16 months demonstrates a lack of genuine contrition,” she said.

Employers or employees seeking workplace relations assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 or visit www.fwo.gov.au For translations call 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

Craig Bildstien, Director, Media & Stakeholder Relations,
0419 818 484
craig.bildstien@fwo.gov.au

Ryan Pedler, Senior Adviser, Media & Stakeholder Relations
(03) 9954 2561, 0434 365 924
ryan.pedler@fwo.gov.au

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