Convenience store giant 7-Eleven has hired a special investigator to make sure it does not exploit workers by underpaying them and making them work for longer hours.
The decision came following the recent allegations that 7-Eleven faced regarding exploitation of its workers. The investigator who has been appointed has a record of solving fraudulent cases and checking for breaches in workplaces. According to AAP reports, 7-Eleven’s interim CEO Bob Baily said that the recruitment of a special investigator has added another layer of protocol.
“The appointment of the investigator adds an additional layer to 7-Eleven’s compliance protocols, which include store audits, enhanced payroll, time sheet and rostering procedures as well as refreshed training and education for franchisees and their employees,” Baily said. “7-Eleven does not condone the failure to meet workplace obligations including the underpayment of employees by franchisees and these measures demonstrate our ongoing commitment to stamping out such practices,” he added.
According to The Australian, a series of reports in 2015 proved that the convenience store underpaid many of its workers. Some of them received only 50 percent of the legal wage. Some of the workers also claimed that the company asked them to pay about $70,000 to sponsor their visa and also threatened to revoke their visas in case they filed any complaint against them.
Bailey said that an independent panel headed by ex-ACCC Chairman Allan Fels was still going through the complaints to ensure providing the victims proper entitlements. Chairman Michael Smith said that there are some more work left to be done in the issue. “As chairman, I am sorry for the circumstances and the fact of franchisee employee underpayments and I am sorry that those workers have been subjected to it,” Smith stated.
“What has occurred is unacceptable and abhorrent and we are building capability internally and utilising external expertise to rectify the impacts of what has occurred and prevent them from happening again.”