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Wage Theft Law in Victoria

2020-06-25

Health and Community Services Union Officials welcome the long-awaited recent passage of laws in Victoria that have criminalised wage theft. Together, as a strong union movement in Victoria, we’ve managed to take the fight to the bosses who for too long have got away with stealing from their workers.

In holding bosses to account on these issues, we’ve sought and won a sense of empowerment for workers who may have previously felt alone and forgotten.

For several years, across the union movement, working people have pushed for the passing of legislation to protect workers from dodgy employers who have refused to pay workers properly or withheld entitlements.

Under the law passed in June this year, by the Victorian Parliament, employers found to be deliberately stealing wages, entitlements or superannuation could face up to 10 years in prison, a fine of up $991,320 for a company or $198,264 for individuals.

While a large majority of these issues occur in the hospitality and retail industry, these issues occur across the workforce and it’s important that HACSU members remain vigilant. Particularly when times are tough, you can protect yourself by doing the following:

  1. Always check your payslips, including hours of work, rates or pay, including penalty rates, leave balances and superannuation payments

  2. If you’re not sure whether you’ve been paid correctly, contact your payroll department to clarify

  3. If you think you’ve been underpaid or have any other pay issue that you can’t sort out directly with your employer, seek support from you HACSU Delegate or contact your HACSU Assist on 1300 651 931

“Wage theft is a crime and I’m proud to be a leader of a strong union that has lobbied for such a strong outcome that protects working people, but we can’t catch dodgy employers without HACSU members remaining diligent.

Please make sure you check your payslips, don’t wait to flag any issues or concerns with your employer and know that you can call your union for advice at any time.” – Kate Marshall, HACSU Assistant State Secretary.

Copy of Workers’ Rights Reinstated. (2)