Maurice Blackburn Lawyers welcome ground breaking wage theft laws to Queensland
15 July 2020
Leading workplace law firm Maurice Blackburn Lawyers today welcomed the introduction of wage theft laws in Queensland by the Palaszczuk Government, saying the move would help end the exploitation of the state’s hard-working employees.
Maurice Blackburn Principal and head of Employment Law in Queensland Giri Sivaraman said the new laws followed years of campaigning by unions that had seen disturbing increases in wage theft.
“As we have seen for years, wage theft is broad in nature across many different industries and employer types. In some industries such as hospitality, wage theft is endemic and what we have seen in the media to date on these cases is just the tip of the iceberg,” Mr Sivaraman said.
Under the new laws employers who commit wage theft face up to 10 years jail and 14 years for fraud under amendments to the Criminal Code – necessary changes Maurice Blackburn has argued for since 2018.
“These laws will go a long way in balancing workplace rights and deter employers from stealing from their hardworking employees. For too long employers have gotten away with wage theft because the penalties were simply not a deterrence.”
“And with the economy being buffeted by COVID-19, the Palaszczuk Government should be congratulated for introducing laws that will ensure workers receive every dollar they are entitled to. These new laws are a terrific result for the union movement and for Queensland.”