Our campaign to protect penalty rates picked up some serious steam this week. HSA member and Ambassador Vanessa Watts spoke to ABC News about the effect penalty rate cuts will have on her business, her colleagues, and her own job.

Vanessa talked about the pressures of managing a busy salon, and the toll this can take on her team. “At the end of the day my gosh, I’m so tired, because your brain’s constantly thinking and you’re on your feet,” she told ABC.

Vanessa also discussed wider problems facing the industry. “The main issues are bullying, from either the boss or other staff and not getting paid correctly.” she said.

AWU National Secretary Daniel Walton also spoke out in support of HSA and hairdressers across Australia. “There’s not been a union presence in this industry before so it’s an easy target and the industry is going after them,” he said.

“What we’re trying to do is empower women [to] come together through small community engagement to really give them a stronger voice.”

On August 26, HSA will be attending the hearing at the Fair Work Commission, which will decide whether to accept HABA’s proposal to cut penalty rates from 200% to 150% (Sundays) and from 225% to 200% (Public holidays).

Read the full ABC story here, or listen to the radio broadcast online. 

It’s important to share our story with as many people as we can. When we get coverage on big news stations like ABC, then more people will learn about our campaign. If you haven’t already, please sign the petition to show your support.