Cake shop banned from employing apprentices and trainees

VRQA acts to ensure the rights of apprentices and trainees to a safe working environment.

Wednesday, 12 July 2023 at 3:44 am
A cake shop front window covered in warning tape

The VRQA – Victoria's apprenticeship regulator –  has banned a cake shop owner from employing apprentices and trainees in Victoria.

This follows a VRQA investigation that found multiple breaches of regulations and abusive behaviour.

Apprentices and trainees employed by the shop were:

  • not given tasks relevant to their training (Certificate III in Cake and Pastry and Certificate III in Business)
  • unable to undertake training with their registered training organisation (RTO)
  • supervised by other apprentices and trainees, instead of qualified and experienced staff
  • subject to abusive behaviour.

VRQA Chief Executive Officer said that the VRQA takes a zero tolerance approach to abusive behaviour towards apprentices and trainees.

'In this case, the employer behaved disgracefully. Apprentices were subject to abusive behaviour, prevented from undertaking off-the-job training at their TAFE institution, and not given skilled work'.  

'Employers are on notice that mistreatment of apprentices and trainees is not just wrong – it's illegal. Where we find employers that act like this, we will remove their approval to employ apprentices and trainees in Victoria'.

If you are an apprentice or trainee experiencing abusive behaviour from your employer, the VRQA can offer advice and send Authorised Officers to your workplace. Contact us at: