Magazine of Socialist Action in Australia

7-Eleven still cooking the books

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UNITE, the fighting union for retail and fast food workers in Victoria, has received fresh complaints from 7-Eleven workers across Australia about underpayments, poor working conditions and bullying.

It is clear that the bookkeeping scam, exposed by UNITE in 2008, is still being used by many franchisees. This scam means that many workers are only being paid for half the hours they work. UNITE’s campaign led to more than $300,000 in lost wages being recovered but this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Common complaints from 7-Eleven workers include: workers not being paid the legal minimum wage; not receiving required breaks during their shifts; not receiving penalty rates for working weekends, late nights and public holidays; and wages being illegally docked when cash registers don’t balance.

UNITE is currently conducting a new investigation into the complaints and is asking current, and former, 7-Eleven workers to come forward with their experiences.

Ultimately the only way to stop 7-Eleven ripping off its workers once and for all is build a strong union in the stores. We urge all fast food and retail workers to join UNITE and help with this task.

By Kat Galea


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