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Sunday penalty rate cuts for hospitality, retail staff being phased in over three to four years



Employment Legislation | Small Business

By James Harkness

Sunday penalty rate reductions for employees covered by the Hospitality, Fast Food, Retail, Pharmacy and Restaurant Awards will be phased in over three to four years from 1 July.

The Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission issued a decision on 23 February 2017 to reduce Sunday and public holiday penalty rates in the Hospitality, Fast Food, Retail and Pharmacy Awards as well as the public holiday penalty rates in the Restaurant Award, explaining they did ‘not provide a fair and relevant minimum safety net’.

This week, the Full Bench published its decision regarding the implementation of those reductions. The reductions in the public holiday penalty rates, across all five awards, will take effect on 1 July 2017 without any transitional arrangements; however, the Sunday penalty rate will be incrementally reduced on 1 July each year for the next three to four years. Please see below for further details:

Fast Food Award

Full-time and part-time employees – Level 1 only

1 July 2017 – 150% > 145%

1 July 2018 – 145% >135%

1 July 2019 – 135% >125%

Casual employees (inclusive of casual loading) – Level 1 only

1 July 2017 – 175% >170%

1 July 2018 – 170% >160%

1 July 2019 – 160%>150%

Hospitality Award

Full-time and part-time employees

1 July 2017 –175% > 170%

1 July 2018 – 170% > 160%

1 July 2019 – 160% > 150%

Retail Award

Full-time and part-time employees

1 July 2017 – 200% > 195%

1 July 2018 – 195% > 180%

1 July 2019 – 180% > 165%

1 July 2020 – 165% > 150%

Casual employees (inclusive of casual loading)

1 July 2017 – 200% > 195%

1 July 2018 – 195% > 185%

1 July 2019 – 185% > 175%

Pharmacy Award

Full-time and part-time employees

1 July 2017 – 200% > 195%

1 July 2018 – 195% > 180%

1 July 2019 – 180% > 165%

1 July 2020 – 165% > 150%

Casual employees (inclusive of casual loading)

1 July 2017 – 225% > 220%

1 July 2018 – 220% > 205%

1 July 2019 – 205% > 190%

1 July 2020 – 190% > 175%

Further information: Penalty rates transitional arrangements – summary decision

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