Coles has become the latest company embroiled in a wage theft scandal, the supermarket giant admitting to underpaying staff at least 20 million dollars over six years. First of all, when it comes to the managers, how broad is the problem? How does it reflect on the Coles operations?
Coles Admits to Underpaying Staff By $20 Million.
Coles has said about 1 % of its workforce has been underpaid, 20 million dollars over the last six years. A majority of that is supermarket managers their 16 million dollars in payments. The rest is liquor store managers; they’re owed four million dollars. Coles has said today that its review is still ongoing, so the numbers could rise and instant breaking news.
Coles was claiming the people owed money numbers about 500 to 600. So, if you say 500 people have underpaid 20 million dollars over the last six years. That’s 40,000 dollars each on average, so it’s a substantial amount of money to be owed the Coles.
CEO Stephen Kane has apologized to all its staff underpaid and says they’re trying to get this review done as quickly as possible.
Underpaying Employees Is Becoming Trend
While it is very concerning and we’ve just had a number of these. People were paying their companies paying their workers’ meager wages and then just not checking that they’re complying with your law.
It just pretty basic stuff, so we think companies have got to hold themselves to a much higher standard here. It looks like some of Australia’s biggest companies have started one to pay workers.
It’s becoming a little bit of a trend. Last year, Woolworths announced it underpaid its staff, 300 million dollars. Commonwealth Bank said it had underpaid some of this stuff Fifty-three million dollars, and the super retail group said it underpaid some staff $32 Million.
So, it looks like a bit of a concerning trend here with some of Australia’s most prominent businesses. The federal government has slammed coles meantime over the wage scandal.
Response from the Ministers on Coles Underpaying workers
Coles is just the latest in a long line of retailers caught ripping off their workers. The federal government says this is an endemic issue in corporate Australia. They are looking at potential new laws to crack down on wage theft, including potentially making it a crime. The Attorney General is not saying whether MyColes would be subjected to any new legislation, only that the supermarket giant is being put on notice.
Analyze that the new laws could see the offending Companies named and shamed. Yes, on the same day as this Coles scandal breaks. The federal government has released a discussion paper about those reforms or options that they’re looking at in terms of cracking down on wage theft as well as potential criminal penalties.
Companies could also be named and shamed if they’re caught underpaying staff. They’re in their seventh year. What are they doing? We’ve had virtually no legislation in the last couple of weeks. We have a government; it’s not like it’s overburdened with parliamentary sittings. They do their day job. They’re too interested in playing politics with everything to worry about.
The issues that are a real concern to Australians and wage theft are significant concerns, so the Labour leader says a discussion paper isn’t nearly good enough. The federal government should have been cracking down on wage theft long ago.