$45,000 back-pay for Barossa Valley workers

7 September 2012

Two cleaners in South Australia’s Barossa Valley have been back-paid a total of $45,200 following recent intervention by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The workers, aged in their 50s, lodged complaints with the Fair Work Ombudsman after they were underpaid the minimum hourly rate and penalty rates between 2005 and 2011.

The individual underpayments were $29,200 and $16,000 respectively.

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

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says it is always a first preference to work with employers to help them voluntarily rectify any non-compliance issues.

“When we identify a problem and contact a business, most employers check their records, realise a problem has occurred and fix it immediately,” Mr Wilson says.

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

“The business involved has now corrected the errors that led to the underpayments and put processes in place to ensure they will not happen again.”

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.

Employers or employees seeking information and advice should visit www.fairwork.gov.au or call the Infoline on 13 13 94 from 8am-6pm weekdays.

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

PayCheck Plus calculates minimum rate of pay per hour, per shift or per week and takes account of payments for overtime, penalty rates and allowances.

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

Workers and employers can sign up to receive the Fair Work Ombudsman’s eNewsletter at www.fairwork.gov.au/enewsletter.

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

Media inquiries:

Penny Rowe, Media & Stakeholder Relations
0457 924 146
Penelope.Rowe@fwo.gov.au

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