Han’s Cafe workers underpaid
HAN’S Cafe franchisee in Rockingham has been fined for underpaying workers.
The penalties were the result of the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) taking legal action in response to 22 staff being underpaid $27,920.
Tac Pham Pty Ltd has been penalised $37,500 for underpayments at the Rockingham outlet.
In addition, the general manager of the Rockingham outlet, Cuc Thi Thu Pham, was penalised $7500 for her role in the non-compliance at that outlet.
The penalties were imposed in the Federal Court in Perth.
The underpayments occurred at various times between December 2014 and December 2015.
The underpaid employees included nine juniors aged between 17 and 19 and seven overseas workers, mostly international students from Vietnam.
Most of the underpaid workers were employed as kitchen attendants, cooks and food-andbeverage attendants.
Staff were paid flat rates below the minimums in the Restaurant Industry Award 2010. Pay slip laws were also contravened. All workers were backpaid in full last year.
The underpayments occurred despite the Fair Work Ombudsman advising Mrs Pham and Tac Pham Pty Ltd in 2013 about minimum lawful Award wage rates.
Justice Anthony Nicholas Siopis found that Mrs Pham’s lack of English fluency and alleged lack of comprehension of the advice provided by the Fair Work Ombudsman were not satisfactory explanations for the underpayments.
“It was also open to (Mrs Pham) if she was not able fully to understand the content or gravamen of her dealings with the FWO in 2013, to have obtained professional advice on this issue,” he said.
He found that Mrs Pham “simply chose to disregard her dealings with the FWO in November 2013 and continued to operate the defective wages payment system which she had inherited, recklessly indifferent as to whether she was, thereby, compliant with the Restaurant Award conditions”.
Tac Pham and Phua and Foo Pty Ltd were ordered to train staff in workplace relations.