In December 2020, because of the extraordinary circumstances caused by the COVID pandemic, the Commission decided to consider the inclusion of loaded rates and exemption rates clauses in hospitality and retail sector awards. Simplifying classification structures, and any other changes proposed, will also be considered.
The Minister for Industrial Relations has expressed the Government’s view that:
‘…in the extraordinary circumstances that have been caused by the COVID pandemic that it would be in Australia’s economic best interest for the Fair Work Commission to use its powers under s.157(3)(a) of the Fair Work Act 2009 (the Act) to undertake a process to ensure several priority modern awards in sectors hardest hit by the pandemic be amended. [Focusing on] key changes that could potentially support Australia’s economic recovery.’
The awards identified by the Minister as the key awards in distressed industry sectors are:
- General Retail Industry Award 2020
- Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020
- Restaurant Industry Award 2020
- Registered and Licenced Clubs Award 2010
As a result the Fair Work Commission has commenced a process on the Commission’s own motion to consider the inclusion of loaded rates and exemption rates clauses in the awards identified above.
The process will also consider whether any changes can be made to simplify the classification structures in these awards and any other changes proposed by any interested party.
The Australian Hotels Association applied to change the Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020 (AM202/73) to include a new Schedule K – Loaded Rate Arrangements for award flexibility.
Restaurant & Catering Industrial applied to change the Restaurant Industry Award 2020 (AM2021/58) to include a new Schedule R – Award flexibility for COVID-19 pandemic recovery.
The Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees' Association, the Australian Workers' Union and Master Grocers Australia applied to change the General Retail Award 2020 (AM2021/7) to include a new Schedule I – Additional flexibility measures – Part-time employees.
Subscribe to updates
You can subscribe to receive email updates about this case. Select the Award flexibility – Hospitality and retail sectors subscription service.