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Holy Grail Fined for Underpaying Staff

By Clown Killer 18 June 2008 25

Local ABC radio (666) is reporting that The Holy Grail bars in Kingston and Civic have been fined $30,000 by the Office of the Workplace Ombudsman for underpaying their junior staff. There’s nothing on the WPO website in terms of a press release as yet.

It’s kind of poignant really, given the sometimes robust discussion on a parallel thread about the merits or otherwise of tipping wait-staff.  Maybe we’re at the top of that ‘slippery slope’ some have talked about – were the Holy Grails owners underpaying simply because they thought that they could get away with it? I would have imagined with a fine of that size it wouldn’t have been a strict liability offence so a little incompetent book-keeping is unlikely to have been the cause.

When it comes to tipping, the comparisons with the US are easily made, but it’s kind of comforting to know that when push comes to shove, we have systems that provide protections for workers.

What’s Your opinion?


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Holy Grail Fined for Underpaying Staff
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transaustralia 1:12 am 14 Jul 08

Such companies should be criminally liable for such conduct. I’m sure they would demand nothing less if somebody tried to get out the door with a couple of items of the glassware under their coat.

These companies make some of the most remorseless defendants in the legal system, they lie, cheat, never apologize and probably right now their attitude is probably its just bad luck we got caught.

tylersmayhem 12:41 pm 19 Jun 08

I think my comments have been misconstrued as to thinking it’s “okay” that what the Holy Grail has done, and many other business are doing. I agree that award pay is the law, and business owners should be held 100% accountable! I never supported the view that “awards are not ’suggestions’ or ‘agreements'”.

Mike Crowther, please don’t jump to these conclusions! I am simply giving another slant, and my experience as to how I have treated the problem on more that one occasion.

Mr Evil 12:06 pm 19 Jun 08

Does this mean Mr Meldrum would be happy to let me pay less than his listed prices for the food and drink served in his premises – if I ever bothered to go to either of his dumps?

I mean, surely his prices are only a guideline, and are not legally binding in any way?

Clown Killer 11:46 am 19 Jun 08

My own small contribution will be to avoid patronising this business.

Mike Crowther 11:33 am 19 Jun 08

tylersmahem, awards are not ‘suggestions’ or ‘agreements’, they are law. No different to health regulations. Should a business owner be able to serve up dog food and if the customer doesn’t like it they can ‘go somewhere else’? Perhaps stealing from ones employer should just be a private matter and if the boss doesn’t like it, they can employ someone else.

People who underpay staff are cheating other business owners who obey the law and damaging the fabric of our community. I think given the end result of this kind of behavior, Holy Grail got off very lightly.

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