$32,600 back-paid to Noble Park employees

20 May 2011

A hospitality venue in Melbourne’s Noble Park has voluntarily reimbursed 36 of its staff a total of $32,600 after an investigation by the Fair Work Ombudsman found they were underpaid.

Most of the staff - waiters and kitchen hands - are under the age of 20.

Fair Work Ombudsman Executive Director Michael Campbell says the workers were underpaid their minimum hourly rate and were not paid overtime or weekend penalty rates.

Following a complaint, Fair Work inspectors contacted the employer and explained its obligations, resulting in each of the underpaid workers being promptly back-paid their outstanding entitlements.

“The business has now put processes in place to ensure this mistake will not be repeated,” Mr Campbell said.

“We acknowledge that accidental breaches of workplace laws do occur, so our preference is always to work with employers to educate them and help them voluntarily rectify any non-compliance issues we identify.”

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

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 available Online.

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, horticulture, fast food and hospitality industries.

A series of Best Practice Guides have also been developed by the Fair Work Ombudsman to assist employers make better use of the provisions of the Fair Work Act and better understand other aspects of workplace laws.

The guides cover work and family, consultation and co-operation, individual flexibility arrangements, employing young workers, gender pay equity, small business, workplace privacy, managing underperformance, effective dispute resolution and improving workplace productivity in bargaining.

Those seeking assistance can contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 from 8am-6pm weekdays. An interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

Cameron Jackson, Media Adviser, Media and Stakeholder Relations
0457 924 146

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