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Hawaii casino paying back wages to employees

Tue, Apr 30, 5:47pm by Staff Writer

A $3.6 million consent judgment against the developer of a resort casino in Saipan was secured by the US Department of Labor for minimum wage, overtime and record keeping violations by contractors working on the construction project, Khon 2 reports.

The judgment orders Hong Kong-based Imperial Pacific International Holdings and its Saipan subsidiary Imperial Pacific International to pay $3.1 million back in back wages and liquidated damages to around 1,100 employees.

The developer of the Imperial Pacific Resort Hotel and Casino must also pay $200,000 in civil money penalties.

The settlement follows an investigation by the Department’s Wage and Hour Division that found wage violations occurred when foreign-based construction subcontractors failed to pay their workforce the required overtime premium rates for horus worked beyond 40 in a work week.

Investigators also found some of the subcontractors’ day rates placed employees’ earnings below federal minimum wage.

“This judgment demonstrates the US Department of Labor’s strong commitment to ensuring employees receive wages they have earned,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Terence Trotter in Honolulu.

“We will continue to enforce the law and level the playing field, while simultaneously encouraging employers and employees to call us for assistance and use the wide variety of tools we provide.”

“Violations like those found in this investigation can be avoided,” Trotter said.

The Department’s Office of the Solicitor litigated this case.

To date, the Department has found approximately $17.3 million for more than 2,500 employees working on the Saipan hotel and casino project.

Tassie casino workers receive backpay for training

The Advocate is reporting that workers at Tasmania’s two casinos will receive back pay for compulsory problem gambling training they did in their own time.

Up to 800 workers will be paid between $100 and $150 after United Voice lodged a dispute with the Fair Work Commission last year about the lack of payment for training.

The secretary of United Voice Jannette Armstrong said the commission’s ruling meant casino workers would be back paid for compulsory training they were instructed to take in their own time.

Ms Armstrong said that both the Country Club and Wrest Point casinos had agreed to pay workers for time spent in training for Responsible Conduct of Gambling courses and committee to paying workers for future training.

“It was wrong that Federal Group expected workers to not be remunerated for compulsory training that is a very important requirement of their day-to-day work,” Ms Armstrong said.

“The time spent registering, training and doing this assessment takes four to six hours for employees to complete. This should never, ever have been unpaid work.”

Ms Armstrong said the union had also asked that a full audit of all training practices at both casinos be conducted.

She said she hoped the audit would establish further details on the number of workers who would receive back pay.

The union estimates that between 400 to700 employees are affected and the cost of lost wages for unpaid training hours since 2013 could be up to A$120,000.

Since 2013, casino workers have been directed to complete the compulsory training course at home.

The course teaches employees how to recognise and address problem gambling, how to understand gaming legislation and how to minimise harmful gambling.

Federal’s general manager Casinos and Resorts Dominic Baker said the company was happy “to reach a positive an fair outcome for our casino employees.”

“We highly value our employees who expect us to approach employment related matters responsibly and respectfully and we are taking positive steps to resolve some of the additional matters raised,” Mr Baker said.

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