Retail & Hospitality Workers Just Got Slapped W/ A Big Penalty Rate Cut

The ACTU said the decision to reduce the Sunday rates would affect almost one million workers, costing some up to $6000 a year.

"It is not like there is a clear going rate for Saturday and Sunday work".

"We're happy to continue paying penalty rates to our staff, and feel that by continuing to offer attractive terms and conditions of employment, we are best placed to attract and retain great staff".

Full-time and part-time fast food workers will have their rate cut from 150 per cent to 125 per cent.

Wage war: People in the hospitality industry will have the Sunday and public holiday wages slashed.

Otherwise, those who regularly work Sunday shifts in retail will be left between A$29.16 and A$86.78 worse off every week. Given this context, it seems ill advised to reduce the wages of a largely casual workforce that already lacks security and stability. "No Australian's penalty rates are safe under this government". Casual workers will see their rate fall from 200% of the standard rate to 175% of the standard rate. So if you earn $17.70 an hour you would have earned $283, but now you will make $212, a loss of $71.

If you still work in retail, hospitality or the pharmacy industry, or your children or grandchildren do, then things are about to change for them.

Hospitality and retail employees will also see their public holiday rates cut from 250 per cent to 225 per cent.

Businesses have previously told SmartCompany about the need for certainty on penalty rates across the board, citing the stresses caused in particular by state based public holidays like that on the AFL Grand Final Eve in Victoria.

"This is a pay cut that they certainly can't afford and don't deserve", she said.

In 2016, the gender pay gap in the retail trade industry sat around 16 per cent and across all industries, for those employed full-time it sat at 23 per cent.

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"The Commission's consideration of over 130 lay witnesses and more than 6,000 public submissions demonstrates that all parties have had their positions properly considered", said Ward.

But the Turnbull government and business groups say the Fair Work Commission's independence should be respected and the decision will boost jobs and investment, especially in regional areas.

Shorten said it was a "weak and unfair decision" - the thin end of the wedge.

He wrote on Twitter the Prime Minister had got what he had long wanted.

I actually think the argument has merit, but that doesn't mean the solution is to cut Sunday penalty rates.

Campbelltown MP Greg Warren (Labor) was said he was fuming.

Mr Ward and his Sydney-headquartered firm represented the Australian Chamber, NSW Business Chamber and Australian Business Industrial in the matter.

"Reducing these rates from double time to time and a half, will increase retail growth nationally and reduce the unemployment rate in Australia".

ACTU president Ged Kearney said some people would lose up to $6000 a year because of the move.

Pharmacy: There will be changes to pay rates for pharmacy staff working between 7:00am and 9:00pm, while those working before 7:00am and between 9:00pm and midnight will continue to get the existing loading.

  • Darren Santiago