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Independents say it's time to take axe to weekend penalties

A cut in weekend penalty rates could have a big impact on Coast restaurant owners and staff.
A cut in weekend penalty rates could have a big impact on Coast restaurant owners and staff. Brett Wortman/The Daily

THE Australian Independents party has unveiled plans to push for the abolition of most weekend penalty rates for workers.

Leader Dr Patricia Petersen said her party would introduce a Bill to scrap penalty rates except where an employee worked more than 38 hours in a seven-day period or worked more than 10 hours in any one day.

"I've spoken to countless small business operators who are being forced to close down of a weekend or close up shop permanently because of high penalty rates," Dr Petersen said.

"This isn't good for the businesses, it isn't good for those seeking work and it isn't good for consumers."

She said the Bill wasn't only about helping small business, but also providing opportunities for young people.

"Our young people rely on weekend employment to help pay for university and TAFE-related expenses.

"They rely on robust retail and hospitality industries to provide employment opportunities to them. If shops, and cafes can't afford to open of a weekend, or worse, close their doors permanently, our kids will miss out."

Topics:  australian independents federal election 2013 patricia petersen penalty rates


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