A legislative change in mid-March 2022 has seen employees in the Northern Territory gain an additional public holiday over the Easter long weekend. However, this change is temporary and only applies for the Easter long weekend in 2022.
Usually, Good Friday, Easter Saturday, and Easter Monday are the only gazetted Public Holidays for employees in NT each year, with Easter Sunday not normally recognised as a public holiday and treated as a ‘normal’ Sunday for employers and employees. However, on the 16th of March 2022, the Minister for Public Employment, Paul Kirby, appointed an additional public holiday to be observed on Sunday 17th of April 2022 – more commonly known as ‘Easter Sunday’.
The introduction of gazetted public holidays in any state or territory has implications for employers, providing permanent employees who regularly work that day the right to a paid day off under the National Employment Standards, or possible additional entitlements such as public holiday rates of pay if they are required to work.
Employers are reminded that for any full time or part-time employee:
- Rostered to work on days of the week that fall on a public holiday; and
- Where the employee is not required to work on the day;
that the employee must be paid their base rate of pay for the employee’s ordinary hours of work on those public holidays.
Employers should check the modern award or enterprise agreement, or contract of employment, that applies to their employees to determine if/what penalties may apply to permanent/casual employees who are required to work on the public holiday.
For our ER Strategies clients, the public holiday schedule available on Online HR has been updated to reflect these changes. Please ensure you login and download an updated copy of the 2022 Public Holiday Schedule and keep a copy of this on file.
Over the past couple of years, we have seen a few ad hoc changes to public holidays across Australia due to COVID-19 and updated legislation, so employers are encouraged to regularly refer to the schedule available on our Online HR service to ensure the most up-to-date copy is being used.
If you are unsure or need further assistance, please contact ER Strategies on 1300 55 66 37.