||Issue No. 309||02 June 2006|
When the Truth Hurts
Interview: Rock Solid
Industrial: Eight Simple Rules for Employing My Teenage Daughter
Politics: The Johnnie Code
Energy: Fission Fantasies
History: All The Way With Clarrie O'Shea
International: Closer to Home
Economics: Taking the Fizz
Unions: Stronger Together
Review: Montezuma's Revenge
Poetry: Fair Go Gone
The Locker Room
New Deal on Canberra Menu
The Accelerated Chef's Apprenticeship Scheme comes with a Code of Best Employment Practice that focuses on training, health and safety, increased wages, and guarantees union involvement.
The Apprenticeship scheme provides a more accessible path to rattling the pans and aims to keep apprentice chefs working in the local industry.
Working with the ACT Government, employer networks, tourism bodies and the Canberra Institute of Technology (CIT), the LHMU has delivered a shorter apprenticeship program that does not sacrifice quality.
Apprenticeships now run over two years rather than four, with a compressed theory component that focuses on practical experience with the return of a trade test at the end of the course.
Union organiser David Bibo hopes the new code addresses the industry's reputation of poor working conditions for apprentices. Examples of apprentices working 14 to 16 hours per day, seven days a week are not uncommon, he says.
Guest workers also stand to gain as standards are gradually improved. "By exposing a new generation of chefs to better conditions and standards of treatment, we can break the cycle of abuse" he said.
Canberra's diners were shocked when rumours of abuse and exploitation in the kitchens of the capital surfaced. There were particularly unsavoury allegations over the treatment of Filipino guest workers.
These included the case of one worker who was racially abused and threatened with deportation unless he did not eat food scraps from a rubbish bin.
The Code of Practice has received strong support from industry groups including Australian Hotels Association, Restaurant & Caterer's Association and Chef's Network. Bibo maintains "this ensures the legitimacy of the code from an industry perspective and discourages rogue employers seeking to avoid it"
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