7-Eleven: Founder Russ Withers to face senate grilling

 In Australia, NewZealand
The chairman and major shareholder of 7-Eleven Russ Withers will take the hot seat on Thursday when he fronts a senate hearing to explain systemic wage fraud, a head office cover-up and a franchise model that has been described as indentured slavery.
The senate hearing comes on the eve of a critical board meeting to discuss options that will radically change the franchise model in an attempt to stop the 620 franchise network imploding.
Since Four Corners and Fairfax Media jointly exposed the "half pay scam" last month all hell has broke loose with the franchisees. Many claim they will not be able to survive financially if they have to pay the correct wages.
They say unless the model is radically overhauled many will go to the wall. One franchisee who asked not to be named said: "In the past month our life as a franchisee has changed completely… we are living real slavery life," he said.
He said for years 7-Eleven head office turned a blind eye to the underpayment of staff but since the scandal broke in the media it had clamped down on franchisees. It was now forcing them to pay full wages or else face termination.  Sydney Morning Herald – Read more…

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