Imagine working up to 80-90 hours in a week. You’re always at work. It puts huge strain on personal relationships. Then imagine not being paid for many of those hours. That was our life working at Dinner By Heston at Crown Melbourne.
In total, we’ve had $4.5 MILLION stolen from us.
When Hospo Voice members exposed wage theft at Dinner By Heston in 2018 we thought we’d win back our stolen wages.
But on the same day they were due to repay us, Dinner By Heston went bust.
Now Crown has said it will evict Dinner By Heston. This will put dozens of highly skilled hospitality staff out of work, and some workers from overseas could be deported.
Crown wants everyone to believe Dinner By Heston was just another tenant and we’re not their problem.
But the media just revealed Crown is deeply involved in the day-to-day running of this venue.
That’s no surprise to us. We were recruited through the Crown website, some of us were transferred from other Crown restaurants. We had back of house access like other Crown staff and we ate in the Crown staff canteen.
And Crown used us as a drawcard for their high rollers. We cooked for them. Then they went and spent all their money on Crown’s gaming tables.
Crown has a responsibility to us and it’s time they stepped up.
Crown is now trying to distance itself from Dinner By Heston, but it’s clear they’ve been in partnership with Dinner By Heston from the very beginning.
A report by insolvency administrators BRI Ferrier shows:
Crown gets just ONE DOLLAR PER YEAR in rent from Dinner By Heston.
Crown has backed Dinner By Heston with an interest free loan of $750,000.
Crown pays Dinner By Heston almost TWO MILLION dollars each year in licensing fees.
Crown also provides Dinner by Heston with a wine cellar stocked with $500,000 worth of wine.
Restaurant sales go into a Crown bank account and Crown manages all restaurant bookings.
In fact the report also states that Crown created the “blueprint” for jobs at Dinner By Heston, and this was “applied over several years and resulted in the underpayment of employee wages”.
The facts are clear: Dinner By Heston is not just a tenant at Crown. It’s a joint venture with Crown, and that means Crown was complicit in the wage theft.
It’s time for Crown to step up and take responsibility by ensuring that Hospo Voice members get their stolen wages and entitlements and that members on temporary visas are sponsored.
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