Monthly Archives: May 2018
If you are expected to be at work you should expect to be paid.
This not paying workers for staff training etc is not new.
However, this practice needs to be stopped and workers need to be paid where there is an expectation (stated or implied) to attend training or other activities that are in anyway work related.
Back in the early 90’s I worked for Dick Smith (an electronics retail store) part time on Saturday mornings (maximum of 4 hours per week) and I still had to attend compulsory staff training on Monday evenings in my own time and unpaid. these training sessions were basically a staff meeting which lasted sometimes over an hour.
I should say I was good at my job, I was making good sales and I liked my work even though the wages were low.
At the time I was on a training course as I had been out of work for about a year and this job was just to help get by. (yes it was declared income to Work and Income).
After a few months of questioning why I should attend the compulsory training and asking why I was not being paid for it, feeling completely undervalued I walked out.
The complete frustration and cost involved to get to the meetings lead me to the point when I just handed back my uniform at the end of a Saturday and walked off.
Paying staff appropriately for the work they do is vital for the whole of the community. This also means paying a living wage (not just minimum wage).
By asking workers to do work related things unpaid diminishes them financially, personally and morally.
If you find you are in this situation where your employer is not paying you appropriately please talk to your Union (if you are not a member let me encourage you to join) or at least talk to your local Community Law Centre for advice, or contact The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment
If you are an employer doing this practice, stop it now and pay your staff. Perhaps reorganise your schedule to allow training to happen during normal operating hours (not lunch breaks or tea breaks). Be creative and ask your staff what would work for them.