Local Pub in hot water

Written by on 24/01/2019

From the NTNEWS


A DARWIN licensee has denied being racist in the face of allegations made by former employees about his treatment of staff and Aboriginal patrons.

Rorkes duty manager Thomas Brock said he was one of 10 staff members to quit their jobs at the Smith St business on January 12, after the licensee Mitchell McNamee, of Monkey Business Holdings, allegedly failed refused to pay their wages three weeks ago just before Christmas.

Mr McNamee was the former publican of Rorkes Drift, now Monsoons, which was put into receivership in 2004 after it owed more than $1 million to its creditors.

“People would be horrified if they knew what he’s done. He told staff to not serve Aboriginals,” he said.

The NT News has obtained disturbing text messages allegedly sent from Mr McNamee to Mr Brock.

“I told you no blacks in my f**king bar,” one text reads.

“Use the excuse ‘no singlets’ and start charging for water,” said another.

Another former duty manager, Beau Amy, who claims he is still owed $4000 in wages, said the Rorkes dress code was used as a scapegoat to refuse Aboriginals service.

“Mitch said they gave the pub a bad image,” he said. Rorkes owner Mitchell McNamee a claim Mr McNamee denies.

Brock said he has made a report to the NT Anti- Discrimination Commission, who are looking into the matter.

Mr McNamee “completely denies” ever telling his staff to deny service to black people.

“Those are total falsities, we have all types of people in our bar,” he said.

“These are trumped up things said by disgruntled staff. I’m being targeted here. I won’t be bullied into a corner.”

“People haven’t been paid because we’re investigating time sheets at the moment…”

Former Rorkes head chef Dean Julian quit his job last August and claims they still owe him about $3000 in wages.

Mr Brock claims the bar also refused to pay pokies winnings to an Aboriginal man.

“On December 19 an Aboriginal man hit the jackpot on the pokies but he told staff that he flat out refused to pay him the $12,637 winnings …” he said.

“That poor bloke was so excited he won, he wanted to buy his son a car for Christmas before he went back to Arnhem Land. He finally got a cheque three days later.”

A spokeswoman from Darwin pawn shop, Cash Advantage confirmed they immediately cashed the cheque for the man via Cash Stop on December 23.

But the cheque bounced later according to Cash Stop operations manager Jason Hunt, who confirmed they were now pursuing legal action to recover the money.

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