RLC in the Media: underpayment of migrant workers

A client of Employment Rights Legal Service (ERLS) shares his experience of being underpaid with SBS News.

Richelle Harrison reports for SBS News.

New research published by the Grattan Institute reveals temporary migrants in Australia are getting paid less today than they were a decade ago. 

After arriving in Australia with a Masters’ degree, French Law graduate, Benoit, explains he was forced to undertake unpaid overtime every day which amounted to hundreds of unpaid hours, resulting in depression and anxiety.

"You're not really allowed to ... find a job with higher pay or better quality because of the conditions of the visa, so it became very daunting," he said.

The exploitation of migrant workers is a systemic problem. The Migrant Justice Institute says that due to fears of putting visas at risk, only one in ten migrants comes forward about wage theft and other forms of workplace exploitation.

ERLS provides free and confidential legal help to migrants and other vulnerable workers anywhere in NSW. If you need legal help, contact the Employment Rights Legal Service at www.erls.org.au.