300 retailers earmarked for scrutiny

16 January 2014

Random auditing of up to 300 retail shops across three states is underway as part of the latest Fair Work Ombudsman pro-active education and compliance campaign.

Employers in Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory will be asked to open their books to allow Fair Work inspectors to check they are paying staff their minimum entitlements.

These include minimum hourly rates, penalty rates and overtime. Compliance with record-keeping and payslip obligations will also be monitored.

Inspectors will focus on retailers operating in shopping centres and on retail strips in metropolitan and regional areas, including:

WA: Perth, Albany, Broome, Bunbury and Geraldton.

SA: Adelaide, Mount Gambier, Port Augusta, Port Pirie and Whyalla.

NT: Darwin and Alice Springs.

The campaign will focus on clothing and merchandise retailers, as well as some food retailers, such as supermarkets.

Butchers, fishmongers and fruit and vegetable shops will be excluded, as they were recently the subject of a specialist food retailers' campaign in South Australia.

The Fair Work Ombudsman wrote to more than 3000 retailers throughout WA, SA and the NT late last year to alert employers to the campaign and to highlight the free resources it offers businesses to understand and comply with workplace laws.

Where inspectors discover issues, they assist employers to voluntarily rectify contraventions.

"We recognise that errors happen, so we have a flexible and fair approach to inadvertent mistakes and employers who are willing to co-operate with us to ensure they don't occur in the future," Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James said today.

"This campaign provides a great opportunity for retailers to improve their understanding of workplace laws."

Employers and employees seeking assistance should visit the website or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. An interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.

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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