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ACTU happy with Govt position on penalty rates

UNIONS are pleased the Federal Government has shown its commitment to maintain penalty rates. ACTU President Ged Kearney said unions were pleased the Government’s submission to the Fair Work Australia Modern Awards Review agreed that there was no economic argument for cutting penalty rates.

“Any cut to penalty rates would undermine the principle of a weekend, which is a special time for family and friends, sport and recreation, and special events like weddings and birthdays,” Ms Kearney said.

“Across Australia each weekend, hundreds of thousands of workers go to work in shops, restaurants, hairdressing salons and service facilities and that helps make life easier for the rest of us.”

This comes after Independent Senator Nick Xenophon introduced a bill to amend the Fair Work Act to abolish weekend penalty rates. Ms Kearney said unions would use the Modern Awards Review to lock in entitlements for people who worked on public holidays and weekends.

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