I was happily perusing the paper this morning when I discovered that as of the end of October Westfield plans to extend its weekend trading hours.
Yippee! I cried (non-enthusiastically), because as a uni student and casual shop assistant, the weekend is the time I get most of my shifts. And now those shifts are about to be extended to shutting at 6pm. Which means not leaving the shop til roughly 6.30pm.
In the half of the story that’s missing from the net, there’s some discussion about the Leases (Commercial and Retail) Act 2001 which apparently states that a landlord can’t change a shopping centre’s trading hours without the written consent of the majority of tenants.
However Westfield have gotten around this by saying that although the Belconnen and Woden centres will be staying open longer, none of the shops are actually obliged to follow suit. Yeah right. As if any of the shops, the chains anyway, would risk letting other people make money while their doors are shut.
Of course, like the 48 hour trade last Christmas (which will inevitably be held again this year), the centre management staff aren’t the ones who have to work those extra hours and have work cut further into their living-time. That’s left to the store managers and their (mainly) casual staff.
UPDATE Westfield given out a schmick-looking flyer to all the stores explaining their reasoning for the extended hours. Hit “more” to see said flyer.