The ARA securing a brighter future for retailers

Employment law

Saturday 3 March, 2018: As Australia’s largest retail peak body industry, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) have once again secured a brighter future for retailers across the country by defeating the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees’ Association’s (SDA) application to provide additional public holiday entitlements to full-time and part-time employees.

Russell Zimmerman, Executive Director of the ARA, said the Fair Work Commission’s (FWC) recent decision to reject the SDA’s application is a great outcome for the industry as retailers are already struggling with rising cost pressures in a overwrought market.

“Although the SDA continues to add pressure to retailers already facing a volatile trading environment, the FWC has once again understood the serious implications this would have had to the industry and the overall economy,” Mr Zimmerman said.

The SDA’s application sought retailers to provide additional entitlements to full-time and five-day per week part-time employees when a public holiday fell on their non-working day.

“This application would have entitled part-time and full-time employees to a day’s pay, a day off with pay or a day added to their annual leave, not only crippling the retailers bottom line but also impacting on their ability to open their doors seven days a week,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“With Australian retail workers already receiving one of the highest penalty rates in the world, the SDA’s application to provide additional entitlements would have had serious implications to retailers across the country.”

The ARA strongly opposed the application last year, engaging their legal partners, FCB, to defend the application.

“We would like to thank those who assisted with this defence, and hope more progressive decisions like this one will bring further opportunities to employees and employers working in the sector,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“Retail employees are a vital part of the industry, and the ARA will continue to support those working in the sector to ensure these workers – at all levels – are recognised and validated for their hard work in the industry.”


For interview opportunities with ARA Spokesperson call the ARA Media Line on 0439 612 556, or email

About the Australian Retailers Association:

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is Australia’s largest retail association, representing the country’s $310 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. As Australia’s leading retail peak body industry, the ARA is a strong pro-active advocate for Australian retail and works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit or call 1300 368 041.


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