Western suburbs workers back-paid $163,000

2 March 2012

Workers in Melbourne’s western suburbs have been back-paid a total of $163,800 following recent intervention by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The largest recovery was $42,000 for two truck drivers at Derrimut.

The two workers lodged complaints with the Fair Work Ombudsman after they were not paid redundancy entitlements or wages in lieu of notice on termination.

The workers had been employed for 18 and five years respectively.

After a Fair Work inspector contacted the business and explained its obligations, the employees were promptly reimbursed all money owed without the need for further action against the employer.

The workers were back-paid $32,300 and $9700 respectively.

Other recent recoveries include:

  • $21,700 for a clerk in Sunshine underpaid penalty rates and annual leave entitlements,
  • $13,600 for an Altona childcare worker not paid annual leave and long service leave entitlements on termination of her employment,
  • $13,400 for an education industry worker in Rockbank underpaid annual leave entitlements,
  • $11,400 for a Melton food and beverage attendant underpaid the minimum hourly rate, penalty rates and allowances,
  • $9700 for a shop assistant in Derrimut underpaid overtime rates,
  • $7600 for a Melton office manager not paid outstanding wages or annual leave entitlements on termination,
  • $7400 for a construction manager in Altona not paid annual leave entitlements or wages in lieu of notice,
  • $7200 for a Newport shop manager underpaid annual leave entitlements,
  • $6900 for a machine operator in Caroline Springs underpaid redundancy entitlements,
  • $6400 for a Flemington beauty therapist underpaid annual leave and long service leave entitlements,
  • $5900 for a warehouse worker in Tottenham underpaid the minimum hourly rate,
  • $5400 for a Kensington office manager underpaid annual leave entitlements on termination, and
  • $5200 for a manufacturing worker in Brooklyn who underpaid
    annual leave entitlements.

The Fair Work Ombudsman recovered a total of $7.573 million in back-pay for 3556 underpaid workers in Victoria last financial year.

Nationally, between July 1, 2009 and December 31, 2011 the Agency recovered a total of $68.2 million for 41,224 underpaid workers.

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says that when Fair Work inspectors identify a problem and contact a business, most employers check their records, realise a problem has occurred, and fix it immediately.

“When we find mistakes, we’re here to assist and give practical advice to employers on how to voluntarily fix them,” says Mr Wilson.

“These Melbourne businesses have now corrected the errors that led to the underpayments and put processes in place to ensure they will not happen again.”

Mr Wilson says the Fair Work Ombudsman’s Assisted Voluntary Resolution team is now achieving resolution of about half its referrals with the first month.

The Fair Work Ombudsman provides a single point of contact for people working or running a business in Australia to get accurate and timely information about their workplace rights and obligations.

Workers or employers seeking support should get in touch with the Fair Work Ombudsman via the website - www.fairwork.gov.au - or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

Free documentation is available Online for employers to use when hiring, managing and dismissing staff, including letters of engagement and probation, timesheet and pay slip templates, leave application forms and a self-audit check list.

The website has a number of tools and resources, including PayCheck Plus and an Award Finder, to assist business-owners to calculate the correct pay for their employees.

An ‘Industries’ section on the website provides extra, specialised information for employers and employees in the retail, cleaning, clerical, hair and beauty, security, horticulture, vehicle, fast food, hospitality and vehicle industries.

Follow the Fair Work Ombudsman on Twitter @fairwork_gov_au external-icon.png or find us on Facebook external-icon.png.

Media inquiries:

Richard Honey, Adviser, Media & Stakeholder Relations,
(03) 9954 2716, 0457 924 146

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