UnionsWA today responded to the release by the Economic Regulatory Authority of a submission by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of WA the Inquiry into Microeconomic Reform that calls on the Barnett Government to abolish the penalty rates on holidays.
Meredith Hammat, Secretary UnionsWA said:
“The call by employers to abolish penalty rates for working over long weekends is unAustralian.
“Holidays are a time to enjoy sport, a family BBQ and in Perth our fabulous fireworks display.
“Holidays are important part of our culture and community and it is a worry that a recent Roy Morgan Poll found that the number of Australians taking family holidays has fallen.
“If you have to work on a holiday, it’s not a holiday.
“Cutting penalty rates would reduce the already low pay of hospitality and retail workers.
“Penalty rates put a check on the intrusion of work on time to relax or share with family and friends.
“The Chamber of Commerce in WA is also asking for trading times to be deregulated entirely.
“The math is simple – a penalty rate cut and trading deregulation will mean employers will require more staff to work on holidays at lower pay.
“That means low paid working people will have to work longer and more irregular hours to make up for a pay cut.
“Employer groups continue to pressure the Barnett and Abbott Liberal Governments to cut penalty rates.
“Nothing makes up time out to relax or shared time with family and friends.
The Chamber of Commerce and Industry of WA Submission to the Economic Regulatory Authority Inquiry into Microeconomic Reform is available here:
Roy Morgan Research poll on family holidays is available here: