Hair and beauty industry focus of new national education and compliance campaign

13 September 2012

The Fair Work Ombudsman is writing to more than 15,000 employers in the hair and beauty industry as part of a new national education and compliance campaign.

The campaign is promoting the range of free tools, templates and advice accessible on the Fair Work Ombudsman’s website at www.fairwork.gov.au/hairandbeauty.

Detailed, user-friendly information is available on the Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010, including the types of businesses covered, apprenticeships and traineeships, pay rates, terminations and redundancies, pay for training and team meetings, classifications, hours of work, breaks and leave entitlements.

Employers can also register for a free webinar being held on September 24 to outline the Fair Work Ombudsman’s latest campaign and the resources available via the website to assist employers and employees alike.

Key stakeholders, including employer groups and unions, have been briefed on the campaign and are assisting to promote its objectives to their members.

Later this year, the Fair Work Ombudsman will contact more than 800 beauty therapy operators and hair dressing salons throughout Australia and ask them to supply employment records for audit.

Fair Work inspectors will check that employers are paying workers correct minimum rates of pay, penalty rates, loadings and allowances and are complying with their record-keeping and pay slip obligations. Employers in every State and Territory will be audited.

The Fair Work Ombudsman conducted a national education and compliance campaign focusing on the hair and beauty industry in 2009, auditing 330 employers nationally.

At that time, Fair Work inspectors found that 38 per cent of employers were non-compliant with workplace laws, including 96 employers who had underpaid 273 employees a total of $239,000.

Other non-compliance issues included unlawful deductions from wages, poor record-keeping practices and failure to issue pay slips.

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says the hair and beauty industry has again been selected for a national campaign because a number of these non-compliance issues are persisting and the industry continues to generate hundreds of complaints each year.

“We are conscious that the hair and beauty industry employs a significant number of young workers who can be vulnerable if they are not fully aware of their workplace rights or are reluctant to complain,” Mr Wilson said.

“It is important we ensure these workers are receiving their full entitlements.”

Mr Wilson says the campaign provides an opportunity for employers to improve their understanding of, and compliance with, workplace laws.

“We have excellent resources available to assist employers in the hair and beauty industry to ensure they provide employees their full entitlements,” Mr Wilson said.

“If inspectors find minor or inadvertent contraventions, our preference will be to educate the employer and assist them to voluntarily rectify the issues.

“Obviously, in those cases where a contravention is blatant or employers are not willing to promptly resolve an issue, we may escalate the audit to a full investigation.”

Employers or employees seeking assistance should contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 or visit www.fairwork.gov.au. A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

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

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.

Employers and employees 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:

Ryan Pedler, Assistant Director, Media & Stakeholder Relations,
(03) 9954 2561, 0411 430 902
ryan.pedler@fwo.gov.au

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