Winning Against Wage Theft

Winning Against Wage Theft

Hospo Voice member Chloe Morgan talks to us about how she has fought back against wage theft in her union and WON:

"I am Chloe and I am a barista and I have been working in hospo for about ten years.

For most of this time I’ve been underpaid, mostly in cash, where I was paid $16 or $17 an hour.

But now as part of Hospo Voice I look up places I might work for on FairPlate.org.au and straight away I can see places near me with one star, and I just avoid them.

But more importantly, as a member it’s given me the tools and the knowledge to know what my rights are and be confident in pursuing those rights.

My most recent claim was for a job I had over the Christmas period. I got $21.50 an hour flat rate. I worked 10 or 11 hours on Sundays at that rate, so I was really being ripped off.

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I’d been using Hospo Voice’s Record My Hours Tool, so I had a record of all the hours I worked. When I left I could calculate how much I’d been underpaid. Turned out I was underpaid by $1500. Then I used Hospo Voice’s template letter to send a letter of demand. And I got it all back in 14 days.

It felt really powerful to get all my money back. I have never been paid the correct wage. I have never been paid the right rate.

Before Hospo Voice, I never knew penalty rates were enforceable. Now I actually have some savings and a bit of stability.

As a worker I deserve to be paid properly and get the minimum wage. Why is hospo different to any other industry?

The number one piece advice I give to my friends in hospo is to claim what is yours. Don’t have guilt. We’re brainwashed into thinking bosses can’t afford to pay us. They can.

I also recommend you join Hospo Voice. Bosses throw so much abuse at you: You’re a terrible worker, you don’t deserve proper pay. Knowing you have a union behind you makes a big difference.

Now I’ve moved on to another employer. They owe me almost $4000 in stolen wages. So far, they have given me only half of it without the weekend penalty rates. But I won’t rest until i get it all."

Join Hospo Voice today at www.hospovoice.org.au/join

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