A multi-agency task force was formed this summer, uniting the Fair Work Ombudsman, Queensland Workplace Health and Safety and the Queensland police to investigate unfair and unsafe labor practices among farms in the Lockyer Valley. This investigation was prompted by a whistle-blower within the agricultural industry. After discovering several incidences of inadequate housing, unsafe drinking water, unregistered transportation, and other examples of violations toward workers, the Fair Works Ombudsman is opening up official investigations into the operations of many employers in the area. A representative of the Fair Work Ombudsman went on record stating that it was encouraging to see policing of legal workplace policies from within the industry, and went on to encourage workers to report any perceived violations of their rights.
- Places in Queensland are operating under unfair agricultural purposes that could be illegal.
- Many claim that these Queensland agricultural businesses are underpaying their staff, which is against the law.
- There is a police and government investigation to make sure agricultural businesses fulfill their legal wage obligations.
“As a result of the operation, the Fair Work Ombudsman has commenced a number of investigations into potential breaches by several contractors.”