7-Eleven worker alleges she was forced to pay back wage in cash

by HCA22 Nov 2016
A secret video has showed a 7-Eleven employee in Brisbane handing back a significant part of her pay to her employer.

The worker told the ABC that she and other staff were told to pay back thousands of dollars or they might lose their jobs.

"My bosses say they can't afford to pay the government rate. That's why they ask us to give some of the money back," said the employee.

The worker is an international student known as “Anna”, as the ABC said they would protect her identity.

Anna also showed the ABC her bank statements with her withdrawals. Anna said she had paid back more than $6,000 since the start of this year.

HC contacted 7-Eleven for comment and they provided the following response.

“We’re aware of the allegations and are investigating. We encourage anyone with information to contact us directly, or the Franchisee Employee Helpline (1800 711 243),” said the statement.

“Our Franchisee network knows we take a zero tolerance approach to any illegal activity including wage fraud, and where proven we will act - up to and including termination of the Franchise Agreement.”

In an additional statement, 7-Eleven said they called on the ABC to share any information it has to assist their investigation.

“There should be no doubt that we have zero tolerance of wage fraud,” said 7-Eleven’s CEO Angus McKay.

“We have aggressively investigated the claims since they were shared with us last week. If they are proven, we will act upon any illegal Franchisee activity, up to and including termination of their Franchise Agreement.

“Until they are proven or otherwise, it is unfair to jump to conclusions.”

They added that the former staff member involved in the ABC’s story has declined several invitations to come forward, despite claiming to be $6,000 out of pocket.

7-Eleven added they encourage her to do so, to assist their investigation and ensure they can pursue her employer to recover any monies found to be owed to her or to other staff.

“We repeat our calls to the ABC to share all information it has pertaining to its story, including the unedited covert audio and video footage, to assist our investigation and help us take any appropriate action in a timely manner, including supporting the staff members,” said McKay.

“Our commitment to stamping out these practices within our franchised network of stores, and to repaying staff members found to have been disadvantaged, is absolute.”
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