The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) appeared before the Fair Work Commission this week to pursue changes to the roster provisions of the ‘Model Consultation Clause’, to be inserted in all Modern Awards and effective from January 1 next year.
‘The Commission has proposed a clause which, in its present form, could have the impact of requiring employers to consult with employees whenever they made a change to a regular roster. For an industry where peaks and troughs in trade are commonplace, this is simply impractical,’ explained ARA executive director, Russell Zimmerman.
‘The ARA has proposed to limit the circumstances in which consultation should occur so that it is only those who have a reasonable expectation of fixed hours of work who must be consulted with.
‘The ARA considers this to be a crucial issue for the retail industry, and is proud to have been the only retail employer association to have provided submissions on the issue and to appear before the Commission,’ Mr Zimmerman said.
(Australia is blessed with a multitude of retailers association. We have the ANRA, which is basically the mouthpiece of the larger retailers, especially Woolies and Coles. The ANRA would be dead against a review of the laws regarding misuse of market power, for instance. The we have the ARA, which is kind of middle-of-the road, and has more of a small business bias. We also have the NRA, which covers some of the same territory as the ARA but bills itself as ‘Australia’s largest and most representative retail industry organisation’ and tends to be a bit more outspoken. See separate story. Then there are the state retailers’ associations…)