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Union Wage Theft Campaign Hits Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley

Union wage theft campaign hits Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley

A “blitz” on wage theft targeting Brisbane’s restaurant and cafe precinct by the newly formed Young Workers Hub was launched last Friday night, but it’s unclear what the exercise found or achieved.

The impromptu protest was timed to coincide with the start of the Queensland wage theft inquiry, which is investigating the scope of the problem in the state and to find ways to tackle it.

ACTU secretary Sally McManus at the launch of the Young Workers Hub.

New union launched to help young workers

The Young Workers Hub was launched by the Queensland Council of Unions a few weeks ago, and is described as an education, support and campaigning organisation for young workers.

The wage theft “blitz” campaign which was aimed at businesses in Fortitude Valley near the city’s CBD was announced on social media as the Queensland government inquiry into wage theft got underway.

In its submission to the inquiry, Industrial Relations Claims called on unions to do more to combat the problem of wage theft in the state.

“It’s great to see the unions getting out there and doing something about wage theft,” he said.

“Unions have an important role to play in combating this scourge by mobilising workers and exposing rogue employers.

“In Victoria, the Hospo Voice union has been very successful in waging public protests and shaming the Fair Work Ombudsman into taking action against dodgy employers.”

To date, the results of Friday night’s “blitz” have not been publicised by the Young Workers Hub.

“Wage theft has been allowed to fester for too long, and it’s going to take a combined effort from government, unions and employee advocates to eradicate it,” Mr Heffernan said.

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