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Takeaway owner hit with $5k fine

By Harrison Christian

The two unidentified men fled from this Hastings takeaway bar when a labour official entered the store last year. Photo/File
The two unidentified men fled from this Hastings takeaway bar when a labour official entered the store last year. Photo/File

The Employment Relations Authority has ordered a Hastings takeaway to pay $5000 after two men fled from a visiting labour inspector and its owner refused to supply employment records.

Weiwen Su, trading as Kippers East Takeaways on Heretaunga St East, received the penalty after he refused to supply wage and time, holiday and leave records to a labour inspector.

Labour Inspectorate regional manager Adrian Straayer said the labour inspector, along with Immigration New Zealand, first visited Kippers East Takeaways in August last year.

"During this visit, two men who were cooking food behind the counter fled the store when ministry staff arrived.

"When asked about these two men, Mr Su admitted employing one of them but claimed to have no knowledge of the other. He also said the employees do not have employment agreements."

Mr Su was issued with an Improvement Notice requesting records, so his compliance with employment laws could be assessed.

By February this year Mr Su had not provided the records, despite repeated attempts by the labour inspector to obtain them. The Labour Inspectorate filed action with the Employment Relations Authority.

In a determination issued last week, the Employment Relations Authority said Mr Su's refusal to supply records left the labour inspector with "real concern" there was no evidence the employment rights of Mr Su's employees were being upheld.

Approached by Hawke's Bay Today, Mr Su said he wasn't aware of the $5000 penalty but would refer the matter to his lawyer.

Mr Su had just one employee, a young woman who Hawke's Bay Today saw working behind the counter.

He said he paid his employee a wage.

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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