$50,000 back-pay secured for Corowa workers

6 July 2010

The Fair Work Ombudsman has secured more than $50,000 back-pay for dozens of underpaid cleaners who worked at a piggery in southern NSW.

Ajlan Pty Ltd, a contract cleaning company which trades as Austral Cleaning Service, underpaid its workers at the Corowa-based QAF Meat Industries.

Ajlan first came to the attention of the Fair Work Ombudsman when one of the cleaners lodged a complaint.

A full audit of the employer revealed that Ajlan had underpaid 68 employees a total of $52,574 over a three-year period to June, 2009.

The underpayments comprised the minimum hourly rate, penalty rates for public holiday work and a cleaning allowance.

Fair Work Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says the underpayments were inadvertent.

“After we alerted Ajlan to the problem, the company promptly agreed to progressively back-pay its employees all money owed,” he said.

The biggest back-payments to individual workers were $8800 and $5575.

Ajlan entered into an Enforceable Undertaking with the Fair Work Ombudsman and will write to all underpaid employees to apologise and explain what it has done to rectify the issue.

The company has also agreed to take out newspaper advertisements apologising for its contraventions.

The Fair Work Ombudsman has a number of tools on its website - www.fwo.gov.au - to assist employees and employers to check minimum rates of pay, including Paycheck, Payroll Check and a Pay Rate Calculator.

Employers or employees seeking assistance or further information can also contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 from 8am-6pm weekdays. For translations, call 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

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

Richard Honey, Adviser, Media & Stakeholder Relations,
(03) 9954 2716, 0457 924 146
richard.honey@fwo.gov.au

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