On 13 November 2019, the Senate referred an inquiry into the causes, extent and effects of unlawful non-payment or underpayment of employees' remuneration by employers and measures that can be taken to address the issue.
A committee was established to seek submissions from a range of relevant stakeholders such as unions, peak bodies and associations, academics, state governments, federal bodies, the higher education sector, and legal representatives
Wage theft creates significant problems for Australian labour market regulation. The rate of unlawful underpayment complaints and media reporting increased markedly from around 2015, with mounting evidence that wage theft practices have become widespread in the hospitality, retail, horticulture, franchise-heavy and higher education sectors.
This report outlines 19 recommendations and industry findings.
March 2022 "Systemic, sustained and shameful" report