News briefs, 03/12/12

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News briefs, 03/12/12

$104,000 back-pay for workers in Melbourne | Potential $40 billion boost possible from bringing employers together with people with disability | Equal pay for Community Sector workers | Business indicators — September 2012.

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$104,000 back-pay for workers in Melbourne | Potential $40 billion boost possible from bringing employers together with people with disability | Equal pay for Community Sector workers | Business indicators — September 2012.


$104,000 back-pay for workers in Melbourne
 
Workers in Melbourne’s South East have been back paid a total of $104,300, following recent intervention by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The largest recovery was $40,200 for three workers at a Caulfield cleaning industry business underpaid wages and penalty rates for various periods between 2007 and 2012. The three workers were underpaid amounts of $17,000, $13,200 and $10,000.

After a Fair Work inspector contacted the business and explained its obligations, the Employees were promptly reimbursed all monies owed without the need for further action against the employer.

Other recent recoveries include:
  • $22,100 for 37 workers at a Parkdale security industry business who were underpaid wages and penalty rates
  • $15,000 for a Narre Warren child care worker underpaid wages between 2007 and 2012
  • $11,600 for a dental assistant at Dandenong underpaid wages and penalty rates between 2008 and 2011
  • $8000 for an East Bentleigh technician underpaid annual leave entitlements upon termination of employment
  • $7400 for an Oakleigh real estate worker underpaid annual leave entitlements.

Fair Work Ombudsman Nicholas Wilson says when Fair Work inspectors identify a problem and contact a business, most employers check their records, realise a problem has occurred, and fix it immediately.

Between 1 July 2009 and 30 September 2012, the Fair Work Ombudsman recovered a total of $100.2 million in back-pay for more than 56,000 unpaid workers in Australia.

Since March 2006, the Fair Work Ombudsman and its predecessor agencies have recouped a total of $185.5 million for 124,000 workers.



Potential $40 billion boost possible from bringing employers together with people with disability
 
Newly released data from Australian Network on Disability (AND) for International Day of People with Disability (3 December) indicates that increasing workforce participation for people with disability by just ten per cent would result in a cumulative boost to Australia’s GDP of $40 billion in the next decade.

The report reveals that an increase in employment over the next decade from 54% to 64% of working age Australians with disability would boost the nation’s GDP by $40 billion and more than cover the costs for the National Disability Insurance Scheme.

The report, commissioned by and undertaken by Deloitte Access Economics, indicates that almost three-quarters of the 2.2 million working age Australians with a disability are able to work, yet just 54% of these are employed. This compares to a workforce participation rate of 83% for working age Australians without disability.

AND CEO, Suzanne Colbert AM, said that Australia will forego substantial economic benefits if the labour market disadvantage faced by people with disability is not addressed.

Australia is ranked twenty-first out of 29 OECD countries in employing people with disability.



Equal pay for Community Sector workers
 
Prime Minister Julia Gillard said around 150,000 social and community sector workers across Australia are set to benefit from equal pay rises that took effect from 1 December.

The pay rises are the first of nine increases over the next eight years that will lift salaries for workers in this sector by between 23 and 45 per cent.



Business indicators — September 2012
 
The trend estimate for inventories rose 0.7% in the September quarter 2012. The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 1.1% this quarter.

The trend estimate for Manufacturing sales of goods and services fell 0.2% this quarter. The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 1.3%. The trend estimate for Wholesale trade sales of goods and services rose 1.9% this quarter. The seasonally adjusted estimate rose 2.0%. The seasonally adjusted estimate for company gross operating profits fell 2.9% in the September quarter 2012. The seasonally adjusted estimate for wages and salaries fell 0.2% in the September quarter 2012.
 
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