InDaily InDaily

Support independent Journalism Donate Subscribe
Support independent journalism


Weekend penalty rates 'not a luxury', says Shorten


Labor will fight the Turnbull government all the way on weekend penalty rates, saying thousands of families rely on them to make ends meet.

Comments Print article

Making its submission to the Fair Work Commission’s review of penalty rates on Monday, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said penalty rates continued to be a fundamental part of a strong safety net for Australian workers.

They enabled those in low income and highly casualised industries to share in the nation’s economic prosperity, he said.

In a review of the workplace relations framework last year, the Productivity Commission recommended that higher Sunday penalty rates should end.

Shorten said Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has declared the death of the weekend and has argued for a reduction in Sunday penalty rates, calling them an “historic anomaly”.

“Weekend penalty rates are not a luxury, they are what pays the bills and puts food on the table,” Shorten told AAP.

Hospitality workers are in the bottom 30 per cent of Australian income earners, while retail has the largest proportion of low paid workers.

Shorten also noted that women made up a disproportionate share of workers in both the retail and hospitality sectors, accounting for 55 per cent of all those employed.

“By increasing disposable income, penalty rates help to increase the competitiveness of the national economy and help to reduce inequality and the gender pay gap across the Australian community,” the Labor leader said.


Make a comment View comment guidelines

Local News Matters

Media diversity is under threat in Australia – nowhere more so than in South Australia. The state needs more than one voice to guide it forward and you can help with a donation of any size to InDaily. Your contribution goes directly to helping our journalists uncover the facts. Please click below to help InDaily continue to uncover the facts.

Donate today
Powered by PressPatron


Show comments Hide comments
Will my comment be published? Read the guidelines.

More Business stories

Loading next article