$13,000 back-pay for two Bundaberg workers

10 November 2010

Two workers at Bundaberg in Queensland have been back-paid $13,000 after investigations by the Fair Work Ombudsman found they were underpaid.

An apprentice cook was underpaid $8000 and an agricultural worker $5000.

The cook was underpaid the minimum hourly rate, while the farm worker did not receive annual leave entitlements on termination.

Fair Work Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says that given both employers co-operated with inspectors and voluntarily rectified the matter, there will be no further action against either company.

“Our preference is to work with employers to educate them and help them voluntarily rectify any non-compliance issues,” Mr Campbell said.

“However, employers need to realise it is their responsibility to pay workers correctly.”

The Fair Work Ombudsman recouped a total of $4.25 million for 3749 Queensland workers who were underpaid last year.

The Fair Work Ombudsman has a number of tools on its website - www.fairwork.gov.au - to assist employees and employers to check minimum rates of pay.

The ‘Industries’ section on the Fair Work Ombudsman’s website provides information specifically tailored for employers and workers in the retail, cleaning, clerical, hair and beauty, security and horticulture industries.

Small to medium-sized businesses without human resources staff can also ensure they are better equipped when hiring, managing and dismissing employees by using free template employment documentation with step-by-step instructions or by accessing a series of Best Practice Guides.

Employers and employees seeking advice or assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. Translations are available by calling 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

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

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