Foreign Workers


Are you treating foreign workers fairly?

There has been a lot in the news lately about organisations being investigated by the Fair Work Ombudsman for the unfair treatment of foreign workers. Between 2012 and 2014 there was a 400% increase in substantiated complaints from foreign workers with the Fair Work Ombudsman recovering $345,000 last year.

It is important to understand that foreign workers receive the same protection under the Fair Work Act as domestic workers. That means that they must receive all pay entitlements stated in their Industrial Award or Enterprise Agreement as well as the general protections provided by the National Employment Standards.

I recommend always checking the Industrial Award or Enterprise agreement which applies to your organisation and the employee’s position. Not knowing is not a reasonable excuse, neither is arguing that the employee agreed. There are significant penalties for not complying which could really hurt your business!

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