Gold Coast Tour Bus Operator 'Underpaid Workers $40k'
Release date: 27/01/2017
Daily Telegraph, 26 January 2017
A Gold Coast tour bus operator will face court accused of engaging in sham contracting and underpaying two workers from non-English speaking backgrounds more than $40,000.
It’s alleged AVA Travel short-changed one employee $27,938 and the other $15,538 after failing to pay correct penalties by paying a flat rate of $20.59.
The Fair Work Ombudsman also alleges the operator engaged in sham contracting by sending workers a text message in September 2014 advising they would be engaged as contractors and needed to provide an ABN, and then failing to pay the same flat rate but no superannuation.
AVA Travel has accepted it underpaid the workers and has a payment plan to reimburse workers.
Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James said the operator was being taken to Brisbane’s Federal Circuit Court due to the nature of the alleged contraventions and the significant amount of underpayments over such a short time frame.
“It is important that employers in all industries understand that they cannot avoid their obligations under workplace laws by applying a false label to an employment relationship,” Ms James said.
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