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Media Release
Audit of cleaning contractors welcome but hundreds of cleaners still awaiting pay
United Voice, the cleaners union has welcomed the announcement by the Fair Work Ombudsman that
1,000 contractors will be randomly audited next year.
It’s all part of a drive to improve standards in an industry where workers are grossly underpaid,
something the union has been pushing for a number of years.
United Voice State Secretary Gary Bullock says “This random audit is very welcome news as we hope it
will put pressure on contractors to pay cleaners a decent wage and improve their working conditions.”
“Cleaners work extremely hard in a very tough industry where exploitation is rife. They are over worked,
underpaid and forced to pick up the slack when companies scrimp on cleaning contracts.”
“That’s why we have been running our Cleanstart campaign for the past number of years, to ensure
cleaners get a fair deal and a living wage.”
“We’ve had so many complaints from workers about unscrupulous contractors treating our cleaners
terribly; not paying them properly, not having enough staff and not providing proper materials.”
“Just last week one of the major contractors in Queensland, Pristine Cleaning went into liquidation
meaning 300 workers were not paid for the previous fortnight’s work.”
“These workers still have not been paid and we are getting more and more calls about workers in
desperate situations so close to Christmas.”
“A 2010 Fair Work audit of 149 employers found that 40% were non- compliant with workplace laws
with underpayment of penalty rates the most common contravention.”
“While nearly half a million dollars in underpaid entitlements were recovered for 934 employees across
the country from 104 employers.”
“We know this is just the tip of the iceberg so we hope these random audits are just the beginning of a
mass clean-up of this industry so unscrupulous contractors can be held to account and cleaners get the
decent wages and conditions they deserve.”
For further information contact Susan Butler on 0428189130
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