Union claws back short pharmacist pay
PROFESSIONAL Pharmacists Australia has retrieved more than $1 million in compensation on behalf of its members over the last 12 months, acting in court or before industrial commissions, through letters of demand sent by union staff, or recoveries by pharmacists acting on union advice.
PPA says this amount of recovery may be higher in coming years after laws passed in the Senate last month providing for penalties of up to $630,000 for employers who knowingly underpay staff.
Professionals Australia senior industrial officer Jacki Baulch said the common trends in the defaulting employers’ mistakes included underpayment of the award minimum rate of pay, minimum hourly rate of pay not being increased to the experienced pharmacist rate of pay, pharmacists not receiving full compensation for working during hours that attract penalties, or pharmacists not receiving payment of allowances - particularly the loading for staff who were the sole pharmacist on duty and unable to take a break.
Kther failures by employers included incorrect accrued longservice or annual leave payments upon resignation, or failure to pay redundancy entitlements or correct compensation for unfair dismissal cases, Baulch said.