17 November 2015
ACT Gov Must Remove Current Day Off Before Introducing Easter Sunday Public Holiday
Canberra Business Chamber is calling on the ACT Government to consider the impact of excessive public holidays on the Territory’s economy and counter the proposed new Easter Sunday public holiday with the removal of another public holiday.
“According to the Australian Government’s 2016 schedule of state and territory public holidays, the ACT will have 13 public holidays next year. This is the most in the country, even before we add Easter Sunday,” Canberra Business Chamber CEO, Robyn Hendry said.
Canberra Business Chamber is not opposed to Easter Sunday being declared a public holiday.
“We understand that Easter is a special time that people want to spend with family and friends,” Ms Hendry said. “The introduction of Easter Sunday as a public holiday will also bring us into line with our neighbours just over the border in NSW.
“However, for businesses to have to meet the wage costs associated with 14 public holidays, when other jurisdictions only have 11 or 12, is a significant burden. It will impact on their capacity to employ people and open on public holidays.
“As this holiday falls on a Sunday, it won’t affect the working week, but it will erode business profits, particularly for those in tourism and hospitality.”
Therefore Canberra Business Chamber would like to see the ACT Government take away another day off in lieu of this new holiday.
“As a small jurisdiction, it makes no sense for us to have more public holidays than other states and territories,” Ms Hendry said. “This inhibits the ability of our local businesses to compete and grow.
“If Easter Sunday is to become a public holiday, then the ACT Government needs to withdraw a public holiday that is less meaningful to the community and bring us back into line with the rest of the nation.”
Media Contact: Robyn Hendry, CEO Canberra Business Chamber 0418 462 151