Limestone Coast focus of new SA campaign
1 December 2014
Fair Work Ombudsman inspectors will doorknock more than 120 businesses on the Limestone Coast in South Australia this week.
Inspectors will conduct face-to-face visits in Mount Gambier, Naracoorte and Millicent to answer employer questions about pay, conditions and other aspects of workplace laws.
Inspectors will focus on various industry sectors, including road freight transport, retail, accommodation, cafes and restaurants.
Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James says the objective is to improve awareness among local employers of workplace laws.
However, she says it is also important to ensure that employees in the region are receiving their minimum wages and conditions.
Inspectors will focus on entitlements including minimum hourly rates, meal breaks, penalty rates for weekend, overtime and public holiday work and shift work loadings.
Where inspectors identify errors, their preference will be to assist employers to rectify the mistakes and put processes in place to ensure they are not repeated.
They will also check compliance with record-keeping and pay slip laws.
In 2012, the Fair Work Ombudsman audited 53 tourism businesses and found 37, or 70 per cent, were compliant with their obligations.
Ms James said key stakeholders have been enlisted to assist the Agency to promote the need for compliance and a “level playing field” for all employers.
These include the Mount Gambier Chamber of Commerce, the Millicent Business Community Association, and the Naracoorte Lucindale Business & Tourism Association.
Ms James said inspectors would talk with employers about the free tools, resources and assistance the Fair Work Ombudsman has available to help them understand and comply with their workplace responsibilities.
Online tools include PayCheck Plus to help employers and workers determine the correct pay rates, classifications and minimum entitlements for their industry.
“Small businesses often don’t have the benefit of in-house human resources and payroll staff, so we place a high priority on assisting them,” Ms James said.
Employers and employees seeking further information or advice are encouraged to visit www.fairwork.gov.au or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 for free advice. A free interpreter service is also available on 13 14 50.
Small business employers calling the Fair Work Infoline can opt to be put through to the Small Business Helpline to receive priority service.
Nicci de Ryk, Senior Media Adviser
Mobile: 0466 522 004