Upcoming Queensland Public Holidays for 2019

Clients are reminded that statutory public holidays for the Royal Queensland Show, aka ‘Ekka’, will be observed across large parts of the South-East Queensland region in the week beginning 12 August. Brisbane City Council area will observe a public holiday on Wednesday, 14 August 2019, whilst regions including Logan, Moreton Bay, Redlands and as far north as Bundaberg and Gladstone will observe a public holiday on Monday, 12 August 2019.

These dates arise as ‘show holidays’ which are public holidays appointed in districts/shires throughout Queensland in relation to annual agricultural, horticultural or industrial shows.

PLEASE NOTE:   This means the ES office and advice line will be CLOSED on Wednesday, 14 August 2019 for the Royal Queensland Show public holiday.

Importantly, show holidays are treated like any other public holiday on the calendar. This means, employees who perform work on these days will generally be entitled to be paid the public holiday penalty stipulated by their governing award or agreement (often, double time and a half) and permanent employees – full-time or part-time – are entitled to be absent without loss of pay for the day (unless their employer reasonably requires them to work).

As different districts can observe different dates with respect to their designated show holiday, it can become confusing when employees work across multiple districts or, live in one district and work in another. Clients who are confused as to which public holiday prevails for their staff should contact us on (07) 3220 3500 for assistance. For a handy reference, sign into your online account and download our Fact Sheet on ‘Show Holiday basics’ (under the ‘Pay’ subheading).

Public Holidays for remainder of 2019 – Queensland

14 August 2019#WednesdayRNA Show Day
7 October 2019MondayQueen’s Birthday
25 December 2019WednesdayChristmas Day
26 December 2019ThursdayBoxing Day
1 January 2020WednesdayNew Year’s Day
27 January 2020MondayAustralia Day Holiday

# Brisbane City Council area only.

In related news

Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, is seeking submissions on a proposal to amend the Holidays Act 1983 to provide for 6pm – midnight on Christmas Eve to be classified as a gazetted public holiday. Similar provisions for part-day public holidays currently exist in South Australia and the Northern Territory. Whilst the Premier has argued that observing the 6-hour period as a public holiday could boost the pay packet of award-based hospitality workers by $150 and give them the right to take the night off, private enterprise naturally dispute the proposed change.

Employer groups have pointed out that many businesses in manufacturing, health, transport, aviation, emergency services and numerous other industries need to operate on a 24/7 basis due to the nature of their operations. Additionally, with the retail sector already struggling to the point of some claiming in is in a recession, employers have also claimed that the proposed change would further penalise retailers during their busiest period of the year.

Submissions regarding the proposed change to Queensland’s public holiday calendar may be made through to 2 September 2019.