Fairwork Australia alleges Crocmedia underpaid young workers as Four Corners targets media interns

Melbourne media company CrocMedia, which is reportedly part owned by former AFL player Shane Crawford, has been accused of underpaying two young workers.

The television, radio, online and print content company, has been accused by the Fair Work Ombudsman of allegedly underpaying two journalism students a total of $22,168.

According to court documents, the pair who produced radio programs broadcast on the SEN network were asked to routinely worked multiple shifts each week, including many midnight-to-6am shifts without being paid.

One of the workers was a sports journalism student at university aged 20 to 21 at the time while the other was aged 23 to 24 at the time, and a recent graduate from a journalism course at university.

The Fairwork Ombudsman will allege in Court that the workers should have been classed as casual employees and paid more than $18 an hour rather than being classed as volunteer.

The 21-year-old worker is allegedly entitled to be paid $5,767 for work she performed between August 2012 and February 2013 while the other worker was allegedly entitled to be paid $19,341 for work he performed between June 2011 and August 2012 however was paid only $2940.

Fair Work Australia discovered the alleged underpayments after the workers complained to the authority.

Crocmedia is accused of committing multiple breaches of workplace laws and faces maximum penalties per breach ranging from $16,500 to $51,000.

A directions hearing is listed in the Federal Circuit Court in Melbourne on August 12.

The case comes at a time of increased media attention on the topic of payment of interns in the media and marketing world.

Two days ago investigative journalism program Four Corners put out a intern survey which appears to be targeting employers in the print and broadcast media as well as advertising, marketing, PR and event management sectors.

Update: This article originally stated that Peter Helliar was reportedly a co-owner of CrocMedia. His management tell us this is incorrect and this item has been amended accordingly.

FacebookNic Christensen 


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