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Source: Employment New Zealand

Whether you are an employee or employer, you need to be prepared for the 2020 April holidays.

Here are seven frequently asked questions for the Easter and ANZAC holidays.

1. What dates are observed for the Easter and ANZAC holidays?

In 2020, the observed dates are:

  • Good Friday – Friday 10 April
  • Easter Monday – Monday 13 April
  • ANZAC Day – Saturday 25 April or Monday 27 April (‘Mondayisation’).

2. How does Mondayisation apply to ANZAC Day?

ANZAC Day occurs on a Saturday this year. This means employees who don’t normally work Saturdays are entitled to the following Monday as a paid public holiday.

3. What are employee’s entitlements for working public holidays?

(Good Friday, Easter Monday and ANZAC Day)

If an employee works on a public holiday, they must be paid at least time-and-a-half for the time worked. Also, if the public holiday falls on a day they would normally work, then the employee also gets an alternative paid holiday (day in lieu).

4. Can employees be made to work on Good Friday, Easter Monday and ANZAC Day?

Employees can only be made to work on a public holiday if both of these conditions are met:

  • it falls on a day that they would have normally worked, and
  • their employment agreement says they have to work on the public holiday.

5. Can shops open on Easter Sunday?

Easter Sunday is a restricted shop trading day when most shops are required to be closed. Exceptions are shops that can open with conditions (including dairies, service stations, takeaways, bars, restaurants and cafes), or those who have area exemptions or Easter Sunday local policies.

Many councils have put local policies in place to enable Easter Sunday shop trading. Check with your local council if you are allowed to open shop or not.

Local council Easter Sunday shop trading policies

6. Can shop employees be made to work on Easter Sunday? (not a public holiday)

All “shop” employees have the right to refuse to work on Easter Sunday and they don’t have to give their employer a reason for refusing. By law, a “shop” is defined as a place where goods including food are kept or sold by retail. It includes auctions, stalls, parts of a market, cafes, restaurants and bars.

Employers who want their employees to work on Easter Sunday and employees who don’t want to work on Easter Sunday both have specific responsibilities to each other.

Employers’ obligations include:

  • notifying shop employees at least four weeks before the relevant Easter Sunday, but not more than eight weeks before the relevant Easter Sunday
  • giving notice in writing, and delivering it in person to the employee (this could be in the form of a letter or email, or via a group email or in a manner specified in the employment agreement).

Employees’ obligations include:

  • notifying their employer no later than 14 days from the date of the employer’s notice, if they refuse to work on Easter Sunday
  • giving the notice in writing, and delivering it in person to the employer (this could be in the form of a letter or email, or in a manner specified in the employment agreement).

If an employee thinks they have been compelled to work on Easter Sunday by their employer, or treated adversely (badly) because they have chosen not to work, they can take a personal grievance against the employer. This may include seeking mediation to resolve the problem.

The personal grievance process

If an employee works on Easter Sunday, they would generally be paid their ordinary rate of pay for a Sunday unless they have agreed to a different rate with their employer.

7. If employees work this ANZAC Day, what are their legal entitlements?

This year, ANZAC Day is observed on Saturday 25 April or Monday 27 April (Mondayisation). The employee’s entitlement depends on their working patterns.

For employees who don’t normally work Saturday BUT do normally work Monday:

  • If you work on Saturday and not Monday: You will be paid your normal rate for working Saturday. You will be provided a paid day off on Monday and will be paid your relevant daily pay or average daily pay. You will not get an alternative holiday (day in lieu).
  • If you work on Monday and not Saturday: You will be paid time and half for working on Monday and get a paid alternative holiday (day in lieu) for working Monday.
  • If you work both days: You will be paid your normal rate for working Saturday and time-and-a-half for working Monday. You will also get a paid alternative holiday (day in lieu) for working Monday.
  • If you work neither day: You will get a paid day off on Monday with your relevant daily pay or average daily pay.

For employees who don’t normally work Saturday AND also don’t normally work Monday:

  • If you work on Saturday and not Monday: You will be paid your normal rate for working Saturday. You won’t get an alternative holiday (day in lieu).
  • If you work on Monday and not Saturday: You will be paid time-and-a-half for working Monday. You won’t get an alternative holiday (day in lieu).
  • If you work both days: You will be paid your normal rate for working Saturday and paid time-and-a-half for working Monday. You won’t get an alternative holiday (day in lieu).
  • If you work neither day: You won’t get any public holiday related payment for Saturday or Monday. You won’t get an alternative holiday (day in lieu).

If the employee does normally work Saturdays, then the holiday is not mondayised.

Public holiday falls on Saturday

More information

Employment New Zealand has in-depth information about shop trading and employee rights related to the Easter and ANZAC holidays. For more information, contact Employment New Zealand where their concerns will be handled in a safe environment.

Planning to work over the upcoming Easter or ANZAC holidays

Restricted shop trading tool

Restricted shop trading days

Pay for public holidays, sick and bereavement leave and alternative holidays

MIL OSI