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Ann Sudmalis - Penalty Rates

Penalty Rates Last week the Fair Work Commission released its decision on the review of penalty rates in six modern awards. This is a result of the process established by the former Labor Government, which legislated the four yearly review of modern awards. It is also the result of the actions of Bill Shorten, who when he was Workplace Relations Minister amended the Fair Work Act to specifically require the commission to review penalty rates as part of this review. The decision has resulted in a change in rates in the Retail, Hospitality, Fast Food, Restaurant and Pharmacy awards. No other awards have been affected. Three business’s in Gilmore put a submission to the enquiry on this very aspect- - Owners of Culburra Pharmacy, said that ‘it would mean that his pharmacy could open every day of the year except for Christmas Day: ‘[t]his would provide an invaluable service to the local Culburra Beach community. It would also be of great assistance to the Culburra Retirement Village.’ - Mr Waller (Owner and Licensee of The Heads Hotel, Shoalhaven Heads, NSW) who employees 28 staff said, that ‘to save costs’ and ‘he would prefer to allocate extra shifts to staff members.’ - Ms Sergi (Owner of the Steam Packet Hotel, Nelligen, NSW) who employs 11 staff said, ‘I would like to offer more work on Sundays and public holidays to my staff with a reduced cost of labor on those days.’ Mr Shorten established this commission and set up the process that led to this review of penalty rates. At the time, he highlighted the importance of independent decision making on penalty rates. It is now hypocritical for Labor to seek to exploit this independent process for political purposes. Media Statement

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