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Issue #1732      May 25, 2016

Action on 7-Eleven pay scam

UNITE, the fighting union for fast food and retail workers in Victoria, held a protest against 7-Eleven and their plans to scrap the independent wage panel on May 19 outside the 7-Eleven store near the corner of Bourke and Swanston Streets in the Melbourne CBD.

In recent months 7-Eleven’s “half pay scam” has been exposed in the national media. Under pressure the company was forced to establish an independent wage panel. This panel has so far recovered about $16 million in unpaid wages.

But with an estimated $100 million still to be paid out, 7-Eleven has scrapped the panel and is now proposing a much higher standard of proof be applied to the remaining claims.

UNITE secretary Anthony Main said “This is a blatant attempt to avoid responsibility and to skimp out on paying the workers what they are owed. It should not be accepted.

“7-Eleven has been ripping off vulnerable workers for far too long. They need to be held to account.” Anthony said.

UNITE is demanding that:

  • The independent wage panel be reinstated and all workers compensated in full
  • 7-Eleven pays its workers a proper living wage and affords staff all legal conditions

UNITE first uncovered the “half pay scam” in 2008 and helped recover the first amounts of back pay for 7-Eleven workers. The organisation has been campaigning since then to stamp out 7-Eleven’s dodgy practices and to build a union presence in the stores.

Next article – Brian Lowe

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