Poultry boner, Pedro Vannea, was dismissed by his employer Royal bay International after missing two Saturday work shifts after late notice made it impossible for him to get to work. His union, the IUF affiliated NUW, represented the Cambodian migrant in an unfair dismissal hearing before the Fair Work Commission.
The union discovered that when Pedro was hired with little knowledge of the English language and even less knowledge of Australian workplace laws in 2007, he had been hoodwinked into becoming an independent contractor, with no minimum hourly wage, penalty rates, holidays, sick leave or superannuation and was responsible for paying his own tax. He earned less than the minimum wage with no entitlements.
The NUW was successful in getting Pedro reinstated to his employment with full pay and all the benefits owing to him as an employee.
The case was highlighted in the Guardian newspaper in a story about Australian unions being attacked for defending human rights