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Auckland courier to pay $63,621.02 for serious employment law breaches

An Auckland courier must pay $63,621.02 after a Labour Inspectorate investigation found DK Transport Limited to have breached the rights of 15 migrant workers.

The Employment Relations Authority (ERA) ordered DK Transport Limited to pay a $40,000 penalty, on top of the $23,621.02 already paid in arrears to workers, after the Inspectorate uncovered 58 breaches of minimum employment standards.

These breaches include failing to pay minimum wage, provide written employment agreements, deducting wages without written consent, withholding wages for public holidays, and failing to keep accurate employee wage, time and holiday records.

"All employers in New Zealand must meet minimum employment standards, it doesn’t matter whether you have 1000 employees or five," says Labour Inspectorate regional manager David Milne.

"We take these kinds of breaches very seriously, with many of the impacted employees young, migrant workers who may not have been aware of their minimum employment entitlements.

"The unlawful wage deductions made by this employer and their failure to pay minimum wage meant workers, and ultimately their families, have gone without.

"There is no doubt that these workers have been wronged from the outset of their employment relationship with DK Transport, and we hope that the penalties imposed serve as a deterrent to other employers," says Mr Milne.

From the penalty $17,750 is to be paid to the workers, with the Labour Inspectorate to work with DK Transport to arrange payments for the harm the workers suffered.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment encourage anyone concerned about the employment situation of themselves or someone they know to call its contact centre on 0800 20 90 20, where their concerns will be handled in a safe environment.

You can read the full ERA decision online. (external link)