Ed­i­tor’s com­ment:

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - FEEDBACK -

FAIR WORK Australia’s heavy handed de­scent on Port Dou­glas busi­nesses on Good Fri­day was both un­fair and un­nec­es­sary.

While there is lit­tle doubt that a num­ber of busi­nesses were un­wit­tingly in breach of laws re­lat­ing to open­ing hours, the ques­tion must be asked why not re­mind busi­nesses prior to des­ig­nated limited trad­ing days, of the laws?

Af­ter all, it is not that long ago, with the demise of Work Choices that the goal posts were moved.

That nu­mer­ous re­li­able re­ports of some­what stern warn­ings were is­sued in front of staff and cus­tomers is wor­ry­ing.

But it must be said that fines were not is­sued and the of­fi­cers at least showed some un­der­stand­ing.

How­ever, the ac­tion opens up the wider is­sue of how Fair Work Australia’s laws should ap­ply to tourism towns such as Port Dou­glas.

While there is a re­li­gious el­e­ment to Good Fri­day it does not seem to have any bear­ing on the ac­tual laws as many busi­nesses are al­lowed to re­main open as they fit into a cer­tain cri­te­ria.

So, why are some busi­nesses al­lowed to re­main open while oth­ers face the risk of heavy fines?

It’s hard to fathom, es­pe­cially in a town where the vast ma­jor­ity of peo­ple, es­pe­cially tourists and busi­nesses are in favour of be­ing able to both buy and sell at one of the busiest times of the year.

There is no doubt that al­ter­na­tives or ex­emp­tions should be sought in con­sul­ta­tion with gov­ern­ment.

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