• Carol Barron

Easter Trading

This article was first published in eMessenger in April 2021.

When asked what is on top for me I responded – Easter trading. I struggle when I read about shops being open over Easter. There are only three and a half days when almost all shops must be closed under the Shop Trading Hours Act 1990. These days are:

  • Christmas Day

  • Good Friday

  • ANZAC Day, until 1.00 pm on 25 April

  • Easter Sunday

There are shops that have an exemption, so many are allowed to be open by law. I struggle to believe that it is too big an ask for shops to be closed for three and a half days a year. Perhaps this is because I am old - I can remember a time when shops were not open on the weekends.

Many people that were asked to work over Easter are on minimum wages and Easter Sunday is not a public holiday, so they are not entitled to a day off in lieu. Shops that opened would have accepted the small fine of $1,000 compared with the profit they would make by being open. Who is standing up for the employees that were asked to work over Easter and maybe even threatened to lose their job? If it is not the churches, who will?

Carol Barron, Methodist Alliance National Coordinator

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