The National Retail Association has slammed moves by the Northern Territory Government to introduce half-day public holidays over the busy Christmas period.
Under the proposal, retailers will be forced to pay penalty rates to staff who work between 7:00pm and midnight on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
NRA Chief Executive Officer Dominique Lamb said there has been no consultation with the retail industry and that the move will be devastating to retailers as they head into a busy time of year.
“There has been no consultation between the Northern Territory Government and the retail industry on the possible introduction of half-day public holidays over Christmas and New Year,” Ms Lamb said.
“The industry is about to enter one of its busiest trading periods for the year and the NRA is greatly concerned about the impact that such measures will have on small retailers.”
Ms Lamb said that should the Government proceed with the proposal, it will lead to some retailers closing their doors on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
“There will be some retailers who are unable to afford more penalty rates during the Christmas and New Year period and as a result will shut their doors for trade.
“If retailers close their doors, employees miss out on work and consumers are left with fewer options when doing Christmas and New Year shopping.
“We ask that the Government consult with the retail industry and consider the potential consequences of further public holidays during Christmas and New Year before they go ahead with this scheme.”
Dominique Lamb is available for media interviews.
Please call the NRA’s media unit on (07) 3240 0163 or 0467 792 013.