If your workplace practices include either unilaterally or by majority agreement, replacing a public holiday with another date (for whatever reason), the plain-language re-drafting of the modern awards has made a significant decision removing this ability under the modern awards listed below.

In some cases, modern awards had allowed for the employer to unilaterally substitute a public holiday with a different date, or do so with majority agreement from the staff. Now, for consistency with the National Employment Standards (NES) from 4 October 2019, employers and employees must agree with these changes on an individual basis.

As an example, changes to the General Retail Award 2010, are:

  1. By deleting the sentence “An employer and a majority of employees may agree to substitute another day for a public holiday.” in clause 34.2 and inserting “An employer and employee may agree to substitute another day for a day that would otherwise be a public holiday under the NES.”
  2. By inserting clause 34.3 as follows:

34.3 An employer and employee may agree to substitute another part-day for a part-day that would otherwise be a part-day public holiday under the NES. If either the part-day public holiday or the substitute-part day is worked, public holiday penalties must be paid. If both part-days are worked, one part-day at the election of the employee must be paid at public holiday rates.

  1. By inserting the following note at the end of clause 34:

NOTE: For provisions relating to part-day public holidays see Schedule F—Part-day Public Holidays.

  1. By inserting the following clause at the end of Schedule F—Part-day Public Holidays:

F.2 An employer and employee may agree to substitute another part-day for a part-day that would otherwise be a part-day public holiday under the NES.

  1. By updating cross-references accordingly.

These changes apply from the first full pay period on or after 4 October 2019, to the following awards:

Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Services Award 2010 MA000115

Airline Operations-Ground Staff Award 2010 MA000048

Airport Employees Award 2010 MA000049

Alpine Resorts Award 2010 MA000092

Aluminium Industry Award 2010 MA000060

Ambulance and Patient Transport Industry Award 2010 MA000098

Aquaculture Industry Award 2010 MA000114

Architects Award 2010 MA000079

Asphalt Industry Award 2010 MA000054

Banking, Finance and Insurance Award 2010 MA000019

Black Coal Mining Industry Award 2010 MA000001

Broadcasting, Recorded Entertainment and Cinemas Award 2010 MA000091

Building and Construction General On-site Award 2010 MA000020

Business Equipment Award 2010 MA000021

Car Parking Award 2010 MA000095

Cement and Lime Award 2010 MA000055

Children’s Services Award 2010 MA000120

Cleaning Services Award 2010 MA000022

Clerks—Private Sector Award 2010 MA000002

Commercial Sales Award 2010 MA000083

Concrete Products Award 2010 MA000056

Contract Call Centres Award 2010 MA000023

Educational Services (Post-Secondary Education) Award 2010 MA000075

Educational Services (Schools) General Staff Award 2010 MA000076

Educational Services (Teachers) Award 2010 MA000077

Electrical Power Industry Award 2010 MA000088

Electrical, Electronic and Communications Contracting Award 2010 MA000025

Fast Food Industry Award 2010 MA000003

Food, Beverage and Tobacco Manufacturing Award 2010 MA000073

Gardening and Landscaping Services Award 2010 MA000101

General Retail Industry Award 2010 MA000004

Graphic Arts, Printing and Publishing Award 2010 MA000026

Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010 MA000005

Health Professionals and Support Services Award 2010 MA000027

Higher Education Industry-Academic Staff-Award 2010 MA000006

Higher Education Industry-General Staff-Award 2010 MA000007

Horse and Greyhound Training Award 2010 MA000008

Horticulture Award 2010 MA000028

Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010 MA000009

Hydrocarbons Industry (Upstream) Award 2010 MA000062

Joinery and Building Trades Award 2010 MA000029

Journalists Published Media Award 2010 MA000067

Labour Market Assistance Industry Award 2010 MA000099

Live Performance Award 2010 MA000081

Mannequins and Models Award 2010 MA000117

Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2010 MA000010

Meat Industry Award 2010 MA000059

Mining Industry Award 2010 MA000011

Miscellaneous Award 2010 MA000104

Mobile Crane Hiring Award 2010 MA000032

Nursery Award 2010 MA000033

Nurses Award 2010 MA000034

Oil Refining and Manufacturing Award 2010 MA000072

Pastoral Award 2010 MA000035

Pest Control Industry Award 2010 MA000097

Pharmaceutical Industry Award 2010 MA000069

Pharmacy Industry Award 2010 MA000012

Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010 MA000036

Poultry Processing Award 2010 MA000074

Premixed Concrete Award 2010 MA000057

Professional Employees Award 2010 MA000065

Quarrying Award 2010 MA000037

Racing Clubs Events Award 2010 MA000013

Racing Industry Ground Maintenance Award 2010 MA000014

Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2010 MA000058

Restaurant Industry Award 2010 MA000119

Road Transport (Long Distance Operations) Award 2010 MA000039

Road Transport and Distribution Award 2010 MA000038

Salt Industry Award 2010 MA000107

Seafood Processing Award 2010 MA000068

Security Services Industry Award 2010 MA000016

Sporting Organisations Award 2010 MA000082

Storage Services and Wholesale Award 2010 MA000084

Surveying Award 2010 MA000066

Telecommunications Services Award 2010 MA000041

Textile, Clothing, Footwear and Associated Industries Award 2010 MA000017

Timber Industry Award 2010 MA000071

Transport (Cash in Transit) Award 2010 MA000042

Vehicle Manufacturing, Repair, Services and Retail Award 2010 MA000089

Waste Management Award 2010 MA000043

Wine Industry Award 2010 MA000090

Wool Storage, Sampling and Testing Award 2010 MA000044


If you’re unsure what action you need to take going forward with your employees, or need help updating your processes to reflect these changes, get in touch with our team today! We’re here to help!