ETU Media Releases

ETU Media Releases

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Unpaid workers robbed of more than $40,000 by dodgy NBN subcontractor

Paul Lister - Wednesday, October 25, 2017

The Electrical Trades Union is seeking urgent meetings with principal NBN contractor Broadspectrum in order to recover wages totalling $18,000 and payments for tools worth $25,000.

Broadspectrum, a Spanish-owned multinational conglomerate, subcontracted Superb Cabling, which in turn forced its workers to obtain ABN numbers to roll out NBN infrastructure in Western Sydney.

ETU secretary Dave McKinley said Superb Cabling had failed to pay its workers for tools and wages totalling more than $40,000.

In addition, the dodgy subcontractor has left NBN job sites in Georges Hall, south-west Sydney, in a dangerous state, leaving behind exposed asbestos believed to be from telecommunications pits.

“This is a classic example of workers being exploited on a major taxpayer-funded infrastructure project that is failing at every opportunity,” Mr McKinley said.

“Broadspectrum tried to wipe its hands of these issues by setting up complicated and convoluted subcontracting arrangements leaving workers exploited and the public exposed to deadly asbestos.

“This is a pyramid contracting arrangement where those at the bottom are ripped off through unfair contracts and dodgy business arrangements, something Broadspectrum should be ashamed of,” said Mr McKinley.

“The NBN is turning out to be a monumental disaster exploiting workers and failing to deliver promised outcomes for customers.

“The ETU calls on NBN Co to undertake a full audit of Broadspectrum and its subcontractors to ensure workers receive their full pay and entitlements.”