UnionsWA has commented on calls by employers to further extend Sunday trading times and media reports that the Barnett Government is considering options to do so.
Meredith Hammat, Secretary, UnionsWA said:
“During the recent election the Barnett Government made no mention of plans to introduce a further extension of Sunday trading times. To do so now would be arrogant.
“Family celebrations, religious observances, relaxing with friends and sporting events mostly occur on weekends.
“A further extension of Sunday trading hours would rob hospitality and retail workers, mostly women, of time with family.
“Business has been campaigning hard to get rid of penalty rate, despite the fact there is no evidence this will create new jobs, and plenty of evidence it will hurt low-paid workers.
“Last year when Sunday trading was announced, Colin Barnett voiced his support for reducing penalty rates.
“This year Tony Abbot refused to support legislation to protect penalty rates.
“Penalty rates are just that – a penalty on employers to limit work intruding on shared time with family and in the community.
“Employers asked for Sunday trading, they can afford to factor in proper pay for their staff and they should manage to keep unsociable hours of work to a minimum.
“If Sunday trading is compounded by a reduction in penalty pay workers in retail and hospitality will have to work after-hours more often and work longer to earn the same pay.
“That means less shared time for families.”
Meredith Hammat is available for comment.