March 2019 | Bosses who underpay their workers to face jail

Date:7 March 2019

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald 

Employers that deliberately underpay their workers could face a stint in prison as part of a radical national suite of reforms designed to stamp out worker exploitation and systemic wage fraud plaguing industries across the country.

The 22 proposed reforms, outlined in a report to the federal government by the Migrant Workers' Taskforce due to be released on Thursday, include a root and branch review of the work place regulator, stiffer penalties and improved remediation processes for underpaid workers.

The report also called for the government to establish a national registration scheme to track labour hire firms, particularly in the high-risk industries of horticulture, meat processing, cleaning and security. The scheme would have the power to cancel registrations if the labour hire firm is caught breaking the law.

Other recommendations include banning employers from employing visa holders for a specified period if they have been convicted in court of underpaying foreign visa holders.

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