Christmas Day Public Holidays 2016

The Victorian Government had previously announced that with Christmas Day falling on a Sunday in 2016, the public holiday would be held in lieu on Tuesday 27 December. The decision meant that some employees working on Christmas Day would be paid weekend penalty rates rather than public holiday penalty rates. This decision had been widely criticised by the unions.

On Friday 25 November 2016, the Small Business Minister Philip Dalidakis conceded that the government had made the wrong decision and declared that Sunday 25 December 2016 would be an ‘additional’ public holiday.


Practically, this means that some employees working on Sunday 25 December and Tuesday 27 December should be paid public holiday penalty rates for working on both days.


However, for employees who are covered by an Enterprise Agreement, this may not be the case and specific advice should be sought.


This decision will particularly affect employers and their employees who are engaged under a modern award, which provides for entitlements in accordance with the NES.


As an example, for those employees covered by the NES, employees are entitled to the following public holidays:


  • Sunday 25 December 2016 (day declared as an additional public holiday);
  • Monday 26 December 2016 (Boxing day);
  • Tuesday 27 December 2016 (Substitute day for Sunday 25 December 2016);
  • Sunday 1 January 2017 (New Year’s day); and
  • Monday 2 January 2017 (day declared as an additional public holiday).


Please contact Natasha Fletcher or Naomi Boyle on (03) 9972 4950 if you have any queries.

Back to news