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South Auckland superettes caught exploiting migrant labour

Courtroom and gavel

Three South Auckland superettes have been fined $57,000 by the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) for exploiting migrant workers.

The companies – Saloni Enterprises Limited, Saloni Holdings Limited, and B Enterprises Limited- were found not paying the minimum wage, annual holidays, public holidays and alternative holidays to their two former employees.

The superettes were failed to keep and maintain compliant wages, time, holiday and leave records and also failed to provide staff with an employment agreement.

“The ERA noted that these were some of the most serious conceivable breaches, and that they were intentional.” said Loua Ward, regional manager Labour Inspectorate.

Director Balwinder Singh, who the ERA aid tried to undermine investigations, and his wife Jaswinder Kaur have been ordered to pay $15,000 and $5000 respectively for the penalties.

The fines are on top of what the companies – Saloni Enterprises Limited, Saloni Holdings Limited, and B Enterprises Limited – were required to pay, which was a $90,000 wage and holiday pay arrears to two former employees.

“The director tried to undermine our investigation by providing false information and denying the allegations,” said Ward. “But the truth came out in the end.”

“The employers took advantage of their employees’ vulnerable position as migrant workers. They breached legal requirements which are in place to make sure all workers in New Zealand are treated fairly.”

Besides the fines, the three companies also face a stand-down period of 24 months from the ability to support a visa application.

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