After hundreds of people marched and thousands signed the petition, the watchdog has announced that they’re investigating Hairy Little Sista. This is a fantastic win, but there’s still more to do. Hospo Voice member, Harry is still waiting to be paid over $3000 in stolen wages.
My name is Harry Connor and I just finished working at Hairy Little Sista, a cafe in Melbourne’s CBD. During that my three months working there I was not paid penalty rates or superannuation. I am still owed over $3000.
My rent was due last week – and I came so close to being evicted, because I had not been paid my wages. I had to plead to be paid. And when I did, they cut my shifts and I was out of a job.
At this cafe, there’s a revolving door of workers paid as little as $17 an hour cash-in-hand.
It’s always a fight just to get paid. You don’t know when, or if, you will get paid. They constantly lie to you. One worker waited four months to get paid. Some workers just gave up and walked away with weeks of wages still owed to them.
But for Hairy Little Sista the money keeps rolling in. They also hit customers with a surcharge on public holidays, but even then, we didn’t get penalty rates.
Across the hospitality industry, from Barry Cafe to Chin Chin to Vue de Monde, wage theft has become a business model. Hospo workers are fed up and now we’re fighting back.
We have joined together to launch Hospo Voice, a powerful new union just for hospo workers so we can hold employers to account.
We’re calling on the Fair Work Ombudsman to conduct a full audit of Hairy Little Sista and order repayment of unpaid wages to all past and present staff. Right now.
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