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Albany disability staff in wage payback

Headshot of Joanna Delalande
Joanna DelalandeThe West Australian
Australian one-dollar coins sit with a collection of bank notes arranged for a photograph, in Sydney, Australia, on Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2011. Australia's central bank may need to resume increasing the developed world's highest borrowing costs to keep inflation from accelerating as a mining boom intensifies, according to the International Monetary Fund. Photographer: Sergio Dionisio/Bloomberg
Camera IconAustralian one-dollar coins sit with a collection of bank notes arranged for a photograph, in Sydney, Australia, on Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2011. Australia's central bank may need to resume increasing the developed world's highest borrowing costs to keep inflation from accelerating as a mining boom intensifies, according to the International Monetary Fund. Photographer: Sergio Dionisio/Bloomberg Credit: Bloomberg

Almost 50 employees of an Albany disability service organisation are being paid back in instalments adding up to a six figure sum in what a union has described as one of the biggest settlements of underpaid wages in WA’s history.

The Australian Services Union reached an agreement with Community Living Association Inc in June after it alleged the organisation had been underpaying 47 current and former employees going back six years. The exact amount of the settlement is confidential but the ASU confirmed it exceeded six figures.

According to a statement on the settlement, CLA admitted underpaying affected workers and apologised unconditionally.

The ASU and CLA acknowledged the underpayments arose partly from a lack of industrial relations experience on the part of CLA but CLA accepted the concerns of the affected employees should have been addressed earlier.

The organisation had since introduced changes to its governance and its organisational structure to ensure the underpayments were not repeated.

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