The September issue of Pet Industry News is now on-line htp://www.petnews.com.au
The hard copy of the magazine will be distributed later this week.
This issue will include AusPet17 Show Catalogue
The major stories include a report of the health of Retail Pet shops in Australia by Caroline Zambrano
Reeling in guilty biosecurity offenders
A male international passenger recently cast themselves into a sea of trouble after trying to bring live fighting fish, snails and shrimp into the country.
Biosecurity officers at Sydney International Airport x-rayed the man’s luggage and Australian Border Force (ABF) officers were then consulted as the x-ray revealed live creatures.
Head of biosecurity operations at the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, Nico Padovan, said the passenger arrived from Vietnam and did not declare any of the fishy items they were carrying.
“We take intentional breaches of Australia’s biosecurity very seriously and actively pursue and prosecute offenders,” Mr Padovan said.
“Biosecurity officers searched the passenger’s luggage and found five foam boxes that contained plastic bags with two live fighting fish, a quantity of live snails and live shrimp inside.
“These pose a significant biosecurity risk as they could have been carrying a range of pests or diseases that can impact our $2.8 billion fisheries industries, as well as our unique marine environment.
“Our biosecurity officers worked closely with the Australian Border Force at the time of the interception and the passenger was issued with an infringement notice for providing false or misleading information.
“The matter concerning the illegal importation of the live animals has been referred to the department’s Enforcement Section for further investigation.
“Biosecurity is a shared responsibility and everyone has a role to play—but this case demonstrates the strong measures we have in place when people try to breach our conditions.”
The illegal importation of animals carries a maximum fine of up to A$420,000 and 10 years imprisonment.
ABF Regional Commander NSW, Tim Fitzgerald, said this detection shows the efficacy of collaborative effort between the two departments.
“As long as people continue to try and bring undesirable products across our borders, we will continue to stop them.”
“We are always finding new and unusual things that people are trying to smuggle into the country and our officers are well trained to identify and seize anything that shouldn’t be coming through the border.”
For more information on what can and cannot be brought into Australia from overseas, visit agriculture.gov.au/travelling.
New Fair Work laws commenced 15th September 2017
Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James has welcomed new laws protecting vulnerable workers.
After gaining royal assent yesterday, the Fair Work Amendment (Protecting Vulnerable Workers) Act 2017 has now come into effect. This means new, higher penalties for serious contraventions of workplace laws and record keeping breaches started 15th September 2017.
New obligations extending liability for underpayment and other breaches in franchise and subsidiary networks to head offices will start in six weeks on 28 October, 2017.
The changes apply to all employers, companies and employees covered by the Fair Work Act but are particularly important for:
The Fair Work Ombudsman has published a range of information and resources on its website at www.fairwork.gov.au aimed at assisting all workplace participants to understand and comply with their obligations.
- franchisors and holding companies
- vulnerable employees
- people or companies who do not voluntarily cooperate with Fair Work Ombudsman investigations.
This includes information on who the changes affect, what the changes mean for you and what the changes are.
The Act includes a range of measures including an increase in the maximum penalties for employers who deliberately flout the minimum wage and other entitlements under the Fair Work Act 2009.
Ms James says employers also need to make sure they are meeting pay slip and record-keeping obligations.
“Businesses that don’t keep the right records, don’t give proper pay slips, or who make false or misleading records and payslips can face higher penalties,” she said.
Ms James says franchisors and holding companies could be liable if their franchisees or subsidiaries don’t follow workplace laws, so it is important for them to make sure they take reasonable steps to prevent breaches of workplace laws in their networks.
“We will be consulting with businesses about how these laws affect them, starting with a roundtable focusing on the new franchisor liability provisions early next month,” Ms James said.
Ms James said employees should be aware that strengthening of laws relating to cashback schemes means that if their employer requires an employee to use their own money unreasonably, or makes an employee give some of their pay back to their employer or another person, this could be unlawful.
“In passing the new laws, the Parliament has reflected the community’s concerns about deliberate exploitation of vulnerable workers,” Ms James said.
“The Fair Work Ombudsman will apply the laws judiciously and fairly, and work with business to ensure employers understand their obligations under workplace laws. Employers should always check their obligations, either by accessing our free and comprehensive tools on our website, or asking their employer organisation or another qualified workplace relations adviser.
“But for those who are underpaying workers, failing to keep proper records or coercing workers to pay their wages back in cash, we will not hesitate to deploy the full set of tools in our toolbox, including using the new examination powers and seeking maximum penalties from the courts.
Employees can get help resolving workplace issues and also report a workplace concern anonymously on the Fair Work Ombudsman’s website.
The Fair Work Ombudsman’s ‘Record My Hours’ smartphone app is aimed at tackling the persistent problem of underpayment of vulnerable young workers by using geofencing technology to provide workers with a record of the time they spend at their workplace. The app can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play.
Employers and employees seeking assistance can also contact the Fair Work Infoline on 13 13 94. A free interpreter service is available on 13 14 50.
Next Generation of Banknotes: $10 Enters General Circulation
The new $10 banknote enters general circulation tomorrow, and follows the release of the new $5 banknote last year.
The Governor, Philip Lowe, said: ‘The launch of the new $10 banknote is a milestone in our program to deliver Australians banknotes at the cutting edge in terms of security against counterfeiting. I am pleased that from tomorrow people will start to see the new $10 entering their wallets and pockets, and that it continues the tradition of celebrating two of Australia’s most prominent writers.’
The design of the new $10 banknote retains images of Dame Mary Gilmore and AB ‘Banjo’ Paterson and includes elements of their works. It also is the same size and uses the same colour palette as the existing $10 banknote.
Features introduced with the new $5 banknote are also included on the new $10 banknote to protect against counterfeiting and to maintain public confidence in the banknotes. These include the top-to-bottom window that contains multiple interactive elements, a patch with a rolling colour effect, fluorescent ink and raised printing. All banknotes in the new series also include a tactile feature to assist the vision-impaired community.
The $10 banknote will be the first with the signature of Governor Philip Lowe.
While the existing series of banknotes will be progressively withdrawn from circulation, they will retain their legal tender status and can continue to be used.
The new $50 banknote is expected to enter circulation in late 2018. The remaining denominations in the series will be introduced in subsequent years.
Further information on the new banknote, including videos explaining the new features, can be found at www.banknotes.rba.gov.au
Maggie's Rescue calls on Sydney to help save dogs in need
Marrickville based animal charity, Maggie's Rescue, has set out to raise $50,000 for dogs in need at the 2017 Muddy Paws Walk.
Held annually, the Muddy Paws Walk and Pooch Scavenger Hunt brings together Sydney-siders for a day filled with family fun, entertainment and fabulous canines - all in the aid of supporting the lives of abandoned and unwanted dogs.
This years event was held on Sunday 17 September, and saw the launch of the Pooch Picnic. The picnic housed more than 20 stalls, where attendees found anything from gourmet food trucks and doggy treats, to pet fashion and health care.
General Manager of Maggie’s Rescue, Dora Georgaklis said: “Australia is a nation of animal lovers, we have the highest rate of pet ownership in the word, with 66% of Aussie households stating they own a pet. Tens of thousands of companion animals are surrendered to Australian shelters each year, so we are calling on Sydneysiders and their beloved pooches to register and raise funds to help save dogs in need! “It’s truly a day to bring together the dog lovers of Sydney, there will be prizes on the day for best dressed dog, best dressed team and best dog tick on the day! At Maggie’s we have a no kill policy and we see the Muddy Paws Walk as a way for the community to come together and support dogs less fortunate.”
Those looking to support their furry friends can do so by visiting: https://www.mycause.com.au/events/muddypawswalk