Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search


Initial action taken over $4-an-hour wage claims

Media release

19 June 2013

Initial action taken over $4-an-hour wage claims

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment has filed action with the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) in Auckland against an Auckland restaurant chain following complaints that workers are being paid less than $4-an-hour.

The ERA action lodged by the Ministry’s Labour Inspectorate demands that the business owners provide wages and time records, holiday and leave records and employment agreements for around 100 staff across the restaurant chain. The owners failed to meet a deadline to provide the records - which are required to be kept by law. The Ministry is also seeking penalties for failure to comply. 

A total of 15 companies associated with the restaurant chain are involved and each face a maximum penalty of $20,000 in respect of each failure to comply under the Employment Relations Act

The restaurants are being investigated after Labour Inspectorate and Immigration New Zealand carried out a joint compliance operation, after receiving a number of complaints from workers.

Labour Inspectorate Northern Manager David Milne says the ERA action was a first step but if breaches are found to have occurred, further enforcement action is likely to follow including improvement or demand notices, financial penalties or court action.

Allegations included that workers were being paid around $265-a-week for up to 70 hours’ work or less than $4 an hour.

“The exploitation of workers is not welcome and breaches New Zealand law. The Labour Inspectorate will not hesitate to enforce and prosecute breaches of minimum employment standards such as minimum wage and holiday entitlements,” Mr Milne said.

“Most fair-minded New Zealanders do not support labour exploitation. By breaking the law, these businesses gain an unfair advantage over their competitors.”

“I would also encourage anyone in this situation or who knows of people in this situation to phone our call centre on 0800 20 90 20 where concerns will be handled in a safe environment. “


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Trade: NZ Trade Deficit Widens To A Record In September

Oct. 27 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's monthly trade deficit widened to a record in September as meat exports dropped to their lowest level in more than three years. More>>


Animal Welfare: Cruel Practices Condemned By DairyNZ Chief

DairyNZ chief executive Tim Mackle says cruel and illegal practices are not in any way condoned or accepted by the industry as part of dairy farming.

Tim says the video released today by Farmwatch shows some footage of transport companies and their workers, as well as some unacceptable behaviour by farmers of dragging calves. More>>


Postnatal Depression: 'The Thief That Steals Motherhood' - Alison McCulloch

Post-natal depression is a sly and cruel illness, described by one expert as ‘the thief that steals motherhood’, it creeps up on its victims, hiding behind the stress and exhaustion of being a new parent, catching many women unaware and unprepared. More>>


DIY: Kiwi Ingenuity And Masking Tape Saves Chick

Kiwi ingenuity and masking tape has saved a Kiwi chick after its egg was badly damaged endangering the chick's life. The egg was delivered to Kiwi Encounter at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua 14 days ago by a DOC worker with a large hole in its shell and against all odds has just successfully hatched. More>>


International Trade: Key To Lead Mission To India; ASEAN FTA Review Announced

Prime Minister John Key will lead a trade delegation to India next week, saying the pursuit of a free trade agreement with the protectionist giant is "the primary reason we're going" but playing down the likelihood of early progress. More>>



MYOB: Digital Signatures Go Live

From today, Inland Revenue will begin accepting “digital signatures”, saving businesses and their accountants a huge amount of administration time and further reducing the need for pen and paper in the workplace. More>>

Oil Searches: Norway's Statoil Quits Reinga Basin

Statoil, the Norwegian state-owned oil company, has given up oil and gas exploration in Northland's Reinga Basin, saying the probably of a find was 'too low'. More>>


Modern Living: Auckland Development Blowouts Reminiscent Of Run Up To GFC

The collapse of property developments in Auckland is "almost groundhog day" to the run-up of the global financial crisis in 2007/2008 as banks refuse to fund projects due to blowouts in construction and labour costs, says John Kensington, the author of KPMG's Financial Institutions Performance Survey. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news