Christmas Eve (24 December) Part-Day Public Holiday

On 27 November 2019 an amendment to the Holidays Act 1983 was passed by Parliament providing for a part-day public holiday from 6pm to midnight on Christmas Eve (24 December) to take effect from 2019.

On 19 September 2019 the Minister for Education and Minister for Industrial Relations, the Hon Grace Grace MP introduced the Holidays and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 into the Queensland Parliament. The Bill was referred to the Education, Employment and Small Business Committee for detailed consideration.  The committee tabled its report on 4 November 2019.

The Bill proposes to amend the Holidays Act 1983.

The Explanatory Notes state the objective of the Bill is to provide for Christmas Eve (24 December) to be observed as a part-day public holiday from 6pm to 12 midnight.

The Bill proposes to amend the Holidays Act 1983 and make other consequential legislative amendments to provide for Christmas Eve to be a part-day public holiday.

The explanatory notes state that workers would be entitled to refuse to work in reasonable circumstances, or to the payment of public holiday penalty rates where work is performed on Christmas Eve after 6pm. It is not intended that the amendment displace or otherwise impact on Christmas Eve being a "business day" for any other purpose.

The effect of a declaration of a part-day public holiday on Christmas Eve will activate the public holiday provisions of the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cwlth), the Industrial Relations Act 2016 (Qld) and industrial instruments for all employees in the national workplace relations system and the Queensland industrial relations system.

The Education, Employment and Small Business Committee tabled its report on 4 November 2019.

The Queensland Government released a Decision Regulatory Impact Statement approving the option to declare a part-day public holiday on Christmas Eve (24 December) from 6pm to 12 midnight as from 2019. Read more

The Decision Regulatory Impact Statement includes consideration of stakeholder feedback received during the consultation period following the release of the Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement on 4 August 2019.

Further information

As a part of its commitment to fair and transparent government, the Queensland Government consulted with stakeholders about a proposal to declare a part-day public holiday on Christmas Eve (24 December) from 6pm to 12 midnight and released a Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement to consider the benefits and costs of the part-day public holiday, and sought stakeholder comment.

Written submissions on the proposal and the Consultation Regulatory Impact Statement closed on Monday 2 September 2019.

Submissions have been published unless provided in confidence.

Last updated 17 December 2019