Pizza partnership in court
The Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced legal action against the former operators of a take-away pizza business on the south coast of New South Wales.
Facing court are Andrew Kevin Graham and Kelly Nicole Noy, who operated ‘Slice of the Bay’ in Batemans Bay as a partnership, before the business closed.
The regulator investigated after receiving a request for assistance from a young worker who had been employed at the pizza outlet on a casual basis between February and July 2021.
The worker, aged 22 to 23 at the time, performed front-of-house and pizza delivery duties.
A Fair Work Inspector issued a Compliance Notice to Mr Graham and Ms Noy in June 2022 after forming a belief the worker had been underpaid the casual minimum wage, as well as weekend and overtime penalty rates, owed under the Fast Food Industry Award 2010.
The Fair Work Ombudsman alleges that Mr Graham and Ms Noy, without reasonable excuse, failed to comply with the Compliance Notice, which required them to calculate and back-pay the worker’s entitlements.
Fair Work Ombudsman Sandra Parker said the regulator would continue to enforce workplace laws and take businesses to court where lawful requests are not complied with.
“Where employers do not comply, we will take appropriate action to protect employees. A court can order a business to pay penalties in addition to back-paying workers.”
“Any employees with concerns about their pay or entitlements should contact the Fair Work Ombudsman for free assistance,” Ms Parker said.
The FWO is seeking penalties. Mr Graham and Ms Noy each face a penalty of up to $6,660 for allegedly failing to comply with the Compliance Notice.
The regulator is also seeking an order for the partnership to take the steps set out in the Compliance Notice, which includes rectifying the alleged underpayment in full, plus superannuation and interest.
A directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit and Family Court in Sydney on 27 April 2023.
Employers and employees can visit www.fairwork.gov.au or call the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94 for free advice and assistance. An interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.
Small businesses can find targeted resources at the Small Business Showcase and information is available for employees and employers at our fast food, restaurants and cafes and young workers and students webpages.