Know your rights – Fair Work

by | Jan 26, 2023

Recently there has been lot of post regarding about this topic, where people have posted their experience / frustration at this virtual platform. First thing we need to understand its not Indian exploiting Indian but its one of the major issues faced by many individual from various nationality not just Indians so personally i sincerely believe we should stop been so judgmental about fellow Indians. There are all kind of people in every community not only just us. We need to learn to restrain our emotions sometimes because if we don’t, we might end up insulting, cursing, swearing, disrespecting others.. Please be respectful to your fellow countrymen.. I am sure you would have met some amazing Indians in this country (I met a lot), in fact our group itself can give you thousands of examples where Indians have gone above and beyond in helping fellow countrymen. Now about the issue of new migrants / students (More vulnerable to exploitation than any other group of people) been exploited by employers and accommodation providers.. and not only students, even backpackers. There has been number of reports of sexual assaults, sexual harassment, substandard living conditions, breaches of workplace safety laws and financial exploitation. There are few reasons why overseas students are more likely to get exploited.. it could be due to language barrier, lack of work experience (most importantly the work limits of 40 hours per fortnight),and sometimes even lack of understanding of the workplaces / culture. When it comes to work limit, We all get greedy for own personal circumstances and happy to cross the limits. First thing everyone needs to understand everyone, even as a temporary worker / students, you do have some work rights as a local Australia and you have fair work commission for any help. Australia’s Fairwork Commission examines 100 of such cases of wage theft that involves hundred of workers and millions of dollars in underpayments and they are not all Indians. It is just employers that must ensure compliance but it responsibility of everyone’s including institutions, education providers and Students / new migrant themselves. Education providers themselves obliged to provide information to them, and to assist them when they experience workplace issues and there are certain steps a student can follow to avoid such issues.. first been know your limits, know your rights.. speak to your employer.. Speak to Fairwork Australia (they are helpful bunch of people, they are there to help you). There is another myth goes around Cash on Hand is bad, please note it’s perfectly fine to get paid in cash as long as you are getting paid right wages, you are getting payslip and you are on the books and you pay your due tax.. If not, then, this is where the trouble starts. Anyways don’t want to start another long post. The exploitation of workers in Australian workplaces is not only illegal, it harms individuals, undercuts law-abiding employers and reflects poorly on Australia’s international reputation but again all employers should not be seen as the bad guy due to the wrong-doing of a minority and Yes again I am sure they are not all Indians. just to recap what are you entitled to (Off course you need to have valid work visa) and depending on role (Part Time / Casual) you have right for minimum wage, means you are entitled to the same minimum pay rates and entitlements as all other workers in Australia. If you are being paid the incorrect amount, the FWO is here to help. Remember FWO is very accommodating and helpful even if you’re in breach of your visa conditions, your visa won’t be cancelled if you report that you’ve been underpaid (however you must abide by rules). As any employee you do have the ability to request flexible working arrangements, Parental leave, Annual leave, Personal/carers leave and compassionate leave, Community service leave, Long service leave, Public holidays, Notice of termination and redundancy payment. So conclusion is everyone needs to work together to resolve this issue including yourself & your employer.

The following list of websites can help you with any questions or offer assistance if you have been treated unfairly:…/visa-holders-and-migrants…/international-students

Disclaimer: Please note this is just an advise based on personal experience and understanding, for further information and to understand your rights please visit fair work website.

Fair Work Australia


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