Repeat Offender Happy to Take Government Money But Not to Follow the Rules

Christchurch restaurant, Lotus-Heart now owes $44,000 after continued Covid-19 rule breaking.

The vegetarian restaurant’s recent conduct has landed it four fines totalling $24,000 – on top of the $20,000 it already owes for not displaying a QR code or vaccine pass signage and having no processes in place to check patrons’ vaccine passes.

“Lotus Heart has been issued further infringement notices,” a WorkSafe spokesperson said.

The new fines are for not having effective systems in place to check vaccine passes, not displaying signage indicating whether the business is checking vaccine passes, not ensuring a QR code was displayed in a prominent place, and for not ensuring a QR code is displayed at the entrance, they said.

Lotus-Heart owner Bhuvah Thurston has been unwilling to engage with WorkSafe or change her business’ practices, which the regulator previously said was the main reason for the restaurant being fined.

Lotus-Heart claimed more than $154,000 from the Government’s Covid-19 wage subsidy scheme.