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FWC Penalty Rate Decision – Limited Impact for Aged Care Providers

23 Feb 2017

In a landmark decision the Fair Work Commission today ruled that existing Sunday penalty rates in Hospitality and Retail Awards no longer achieve modern award objectives and do not provide a fair and relevant safety net.

In its long-awaited decision, the Commission cut Sunday and Public Holiday penalty rates by up to 50% for many employees working in the retail and hospitality industries.

The awards that are affected by today’s decision include the:

  • Fast Food Industry Award 2010
  • General Retail Industry Award 2010
  • Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010
  • Pharmacy Industry Award 2010
  • Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2010
  • Restaurant Industry Award 2010

The decision only applies to employers and employees covered by the above awards and has no application to businesses that currently have an enterprise agreement in place.

For Aged Care providers that engage hospitality staff under the Aged Care Award 2010 or whose staff work under an enterprise agreement – today’s decision has no impact on your operations.

For auxiliary service providers or Aged Care providers that are structured so that one or more of the above awards do apply, details of the changes to each award are summarized here:

Whilst the reduction in Public Holiday penalties will take effect from 1 July 2017, no decision has yet been made on when the reduction in Sunday rates will commence. The Commission has put forward a proposal that the Sunday reductions be phased in over a number of years (similar to the phasing provisions during the transitional period for modern awards) and interested parties are invited to make submissions on this proposal by Friday 24 March 2017.

If your organisation is affected by these changes please contact Kristin Ramsey – Director, Employment and Workplace Relations if you require further information or assistance.

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