Nine cleaners at several Myer sites in Melbourne will start receiving their full hourly rate after the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) found they had been collectively short-changed $6300 in less than a month stated a 30 July press release.
‘The underpayments were discovered after Fair Work inspectors made an unannounced site visit to Myer’s Fountain Gate site at 6am on December 11 2014. Inspectors were checking whether companies contracted by Myer to provide cleaning services were meeting their obligations under the Fair Work Act and the Cleaning Services Award 2010.
‘They interviewed two Fountain Gate cleaners who worked for cleaning services contractor A&K Saana Services, which was sub-contracted to clean Myer sites at Knox City, Highpoint, Fountain Gate and Altona.
‘Myer also has a services agreement with RCS Cleaning Services, which in turn sub-contracted to Pioneer Cleaning Australia Pty Ltd, which in turn sub-contracted to Preston-based A&K Saana Services.
According to the release, the two cleaners were each earning $17 an hour, regardless of the hours and days they worked. One was an employee, the other purportedly an independent contractor.
The FWO subsequently determined they should both have been classified as employees and been paid at least $22.51 an hour – $5.51 more than what they currently received.
‘After meeting with A&K director Admir Kolakovic, company business manager Adnan Kolakovic and their accountant, Fair Work inspectors found that as well as underpaying its direct employees, the company had mis-classified a number of staff as independent contractors,’ the release reported.
‘Inspectors identified that nine staff had been short-changed amounts ranging from $225 to $1009 for the pay period May 4 to 31 this year. They were underpaid their minimum hourly rate, minimum four-hour engagement period, broken shift allowances, penalty rates for early and late shifts, overtime rates and penalties for weekend and public holiday work.’
The outcome found that A&K Saana Services is one of a number of sub-contractors to Pioneer that has been found to have misclassified and underpaid its workers.
‘As a result of the contraventions, A&K director Admir Kolakovic has entered into an Enforceable Undertaking (EU) with the FWO to ensure behavioural change and future compliance with workplace laws.’