The spokesperson stressed the broadcaster has since changed the way it hires casual staff and has rolled out a training program to ensure managers are made aware of their legal obligations. The initial underpayments occurred because some casuals were paid a flat rate that was not sufficient enough to cover penalty rates and overtime as required under the ABC’s enterprise bargaining agreement.
Sinddy Ealy, from the Community and Public Sector Union, said she was relieved the under-payment saga was coming to an end.
“The magnitude and scope of the underpayment was obviously quite enormous,” she said. “Initially [the ABC] was confident it could get it done by May, then it was September. It’s now November. Casual workers need to make sure they understand their rights in the workforce.”
While the ABC has budgeted for $23 million in back pay, the true figure won’t be known until the Fair Work process, which is still underway, gets finalised.