Did you know that Queensland workers are being ripped off to the tune of $1.2 billion a year?
Across our state, dodgy businesses and cheapskate bosses are continuing to underpay and cheat their employees in an epidemic of wage theft across several industries.
Wage theft is affecting around 437,000, or one-in-five, Queensland workers.
If any everyday person were to reach their hand into your pocket and take money from you and your family it would be called out as theft and considered a crime. It’s time that the same applied for wage theft as well.
Last year Branch Secretary Peter Biagini joined representatives from Maurice Blackburn Lawyers and our fellow unions to give evidence to the Queensland Parliament on Wage Theft in the Transport Industry.
Peter was joined by a member working for Boske who was paid the same hourly rate no matter how many hours he worked in a week. He may have worked 60 to 70 hours but received no penalties, overtime of other allowances. He was significantly underpaid by comparison to had he been an employee working the same hours and entitled to the benefit of an Award.
For workers in the rideshare industry as well, exploitation from big multinationals like Uber could be considered an aggressive form of wage theft as they seek to bypass Australia’s Industrial Relations framework and claim drivers as ‘partners’ instead of Employees.
Following our evidence – Queensland Minister Grace Grace announced that the Palaszczuk Government supports making wage theft a criminal offence and will be taking action to make the wage recovery process simpler for employees in our industry.
Your Transport Workers’ Union is committed to changing our industry for the better. Every year our legal team recovers hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid wages and entitlements for union members. If you believe you’ve been a victim of Wage Theft, don’t hesitate to contact your local union official.