Monday, February 25, 2013

Why not a Thousand?

Perusing the newspapers (as one does) the eye was caught by yet another of those articles expounding on the evils of the restaurant industry, and how restaurants/cafes are underpaying staff, blah blah blah.

The article was accompanied by the usual photo of an indignant looking former employee standing with arms folded in front of an allegedly offending premises.

Knowing the complexity of the industrial awards, and that most restaurant operators have a choice:...
  • Run the restaurant, or
  • Devote themself full time to interpreting and applying the award.
..Mine Host is of the belief that were the industrial awards simplified, there would be much less confusion.

Try this one for size:

The payscale section of the industrial award  or instrument (not my terminology) that applies to the Wayside Tavern has 962 pay rates, yes Nine-Hundred-and-Sixty-Two.

(First published by Mine Host in comments at Prick With a Fork.)

Friday, February 08, 2013

Visa Breach (part 3)

Wong Gomez Singh is an employer sponsored overseas worker at the Wayside Tavern.

Wong Gomez Singh has been issed their visa on the condition that:
  • They remain in the employ of the Wayside Tavern for two years,
  • Do not perform a type of job other than that for which they are employed, and
  • All work they perform is to be in a specified geographic area (say "Nth Qld).
Six months into the job Wong Gomez Singh gives notice:  "I won't be here Monday."

You are obliged to report it to the dept if the sponsored employee leave the job, for any reason whatsoever.

So Mine Host contacts the Immigration Dept to report that Wong Gomez Singh has quit their job.

The immigration officer taking the call stifles a yawn and tersely reminds Mine Host that in this and any future cases Mine Host is legally required to report the matter.  ("Thankyou" would have sufficed.)

Mine Host phones the Immigration Dept again with details of Wong Gomez Singh's new job, seething that the new employer has not had to meet any of the pre-conditions, or gone to any cost.

The immigration officer stifles a yawn and makes note of the "additional information".

A few months later, Mine Host phone the department again, to find out why Wong Gomez Singh has not had their visa cancelled?

This is when things start to happen!

The very first thing to happen is the Immigration Officer tersely informs Mine Host that they aren't just going to cancel a visa, not without fully investigating to see if there has in fact been a breach.
(Payroll records would do it, from both my place and the new empoyer)

Mine Host is informed (pretty roughly) that this sort of thing is "playing with people's residency".
Er... no... they don't get residency until they fulfil all conditions of their visa.  (So says the brochure, so says the immigration dept's website.)

So Mine Host places a phone call to the "Visa Cancellation Team", and it feels like things are under way at last.  Oh boy, are they interested in this.  No, there is no record in the dept of Wong Gomez Singh ever being investigated or anything.  Yes, there will now be an investigation.

This Visa Cancellation Team really likes to hear from the sponsoring employer, and will take testimony of the employer into consideration when making a decision, blah blah blah....

Mine Host never again hears from either the Visa Cancellation Team, or anybody else in the department.

In the subsequent months Wong Gomez Singh starts working in a totally different field to that prescribed on the visa, then with a move to the metropolis of Melbourne Wong Gomez Singh breaches the final condition of their visa, which is no matter what, to remain in a "regional" area for the full two years.

Wong Gomez Singh is subsquently granted permenant residency, citizenship to automatically follow.
Wong Gomez Singh has not adhered to even one condition of their visa.

This has happened to Mine Host three times.  To the neighboring employer, four times.

You may think that the Department of Immigration and Citizenship does nothing to enforce, or even investigate, breaches of visa conditions by visa holders.

You may be right.

You may think that it is a regular event for an employer sponsored worker to breach every condition of their visa, yet be granted Australian citizenship.

You may well be right.

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Whining (or the customer is always Wrong).

Newly delivered wine in the Wayside Tavern cellar.
This wine will not be retailed.
It is exclusively sold uncorked to diners-at-the-table in the Wayside Tavern restaurant.
Recently Australian wine producer Yalumba discovered that some of their wines were being offered in the USA by a wine club run by the National Rifle Association.

Yalumba must be selling more wine than they can produce or something, as they immediately took action to have their wines removed from sale.

This was the (cough) brainstorm of current Yalumba boss Robert Hill Smith (he is the 5th generation of the family in the business, not the "founder" - as was erronously reported in much of the US media).

Robert Hill Smith would seem to have a brown thumb in marketing:

The money quote:

 “Philosophically, I’m not disposed towards the NRA, which runs counter to my family’s, and I would think all my employees’, positions on gun laws,” Yalumba founder (sic) Robert Hill Smith said. “We will act to withdraw our stock or at least not service the account any longer.”
Just as well he owns the company.  An employed executive would be fired in seconds, or just however long it took for his boss to learn of that quote.
Mine Host's heart bleeds for the marketing people who have put in years of effort lifting the profile of Australian wine in North America, efforts that have likely just been set back by years.
Yalumba want to "act to withdraw" their stock from gun owners?  Mine Host, a long standing and very bitter opponent of gun laws, stands ready to assist.
The wine list at the Wayside Tavern (one of the better wine lists in Qld) will no longer include anything from Yalumba.  (Just as soon as current stocks are cleared that is, hehe).
Those who know their plonk will recognise the quantities and quality of the wines in the picture above, and know the subtle damage this decision will do to Yalumba.
Parked beside the (last ever) order of Yalumba Octavius, is an equal quantity of Jim Barry Armagh.
Jim Barry wines boss Peter Barry, had this to say about his wine being offered by the NRA:

 "No matter religion, colour or creed, I’m just happy people are drinking and enjoying Australian wine.”
You can't argue with that sentiment!  What a fun fellow he must be to those lucky enough to know him.
Jim Barry Armagh, a far superior drop than the Yalumba Octavius, will be promoted heavily by Mine Host.  (Update:  This is not true.  The Armagh is too hard to come by, supplies are too limited, and it is too good, I'm already able to sell 10 times the allocation Jim Barry gives me.  But I'll do what I can for a winery that produces such first class wine.  For quality, Jim Barry is in the top Five of Australian wines.)
Mine Host urges all who enjoy their wines to help these two wine companies:

Yalumba want less customers, (you all know what to do)
Jim Barry are happy to know you are enjoying Australian wine!
Lets all do our best to help Jim Barry Wines have their wish granted!

Update:  For some reason this story received very little coverage in Australia.  Therefore  Hat tip to Paco for bringing this piece of treason to Mine Host's attention.

Sunday, February 03, 2013

Visa Breach (part 2)

If a visa sponsor breaches a visa condition, the dept responds with a pile driver.  Even if the breach is so technical that only those with the mentality of an over-the-top traffic cop would consider it to be even that (technical breach).

Visa holders, on the other hand, breach the conditions of their visa all the time.

How does the dept. respond?

The dept. won't even look into the matter.

The only way anything will happen is if the sponsoring employer makes lots of waves with the dept.
The dept. then will make a (fake) promise to look into the matter.

That will be the last anyone will hear of the matter.

There are a plethora of employer-sponsored visa subclasses.  Typical conditions are:
  • To remain in employment with the sponsoring employer.
  • To work only at a specified location or geographical area.
  • To not go into business or otherwise self-employ.
A breach of any of these conditions is sufficient for the visa to be cancelled.

Mine Host knows of countless such breaches being reported to the dept.
Mine Host knows not one of those breaches resulted in a visa cancellation.

This the double standard the dept. applies to visas.
This is the degree of incompetence of the federal government.
This is the disdain with which the dept. treats Australians, and the blind eye the dept. turns to lawbreakers.

Coming up, some real life examples of visa breaches, and the (lack of) response by the dept.