Horse racing industry focus of new campaign in NSW, Victoria and Queensland

6 March 2013

The Fair Work Ombudsman will audit up to 90 horse racing trainers over the next three months to check they are paying their employees their full entitlements.

About 30 trainers will be selected at random for audit in each of NSW, Victoria and Queensland across regions including:

NSW: Sydney and the Hunter, Orange/Dubbo, North Coast and South Coast regions.

Vic: Melbourne, Bellarine Peninsula, East Gippsland, Mornington Peninsula and South-Western Victoria.

Qld: Brisbane, Gold Coast, Mackay region and Toowoomba region.

Inspectors will check that trainers are paying workers in-line with minimum wage and penalty rates and complying with record-keeping and pay slip obligations.

There will be a focus on ensuring stablehands and strappers are being paid correctly.

Fair Work Ombudsman, Nicholas Wilson, said the horse racing industry was selected for auditing because it has been the source of dozens of complaints over the past two years, with most cases involving underpayment of stablehands.

"Where audits reveal contraventions, the preference of Fair Work Inspectors will be to assist employers to voluntarily rectify their issues and put processes in place to ensure future compliance," Mr Wilson said.

Employers will be advised of the range of user-friendly resources available at www.fairwork.gov.au to assist them to comply with their obligations.

"This campaign is an ideal opportunity for employers in the horse racing industry to ensure they understand their obligations under workplace laws and are paying their stablehands correctly," Mr Wilson said.

"If small errors in wages and entitlements are left unchecked they can mount up and become significant back-payments of thousands of dollars. This is why it’s important that employers ensure they get it right the first time around."

Workers and employers seeking advice should visit the website or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

Media inquiries:

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

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