“The ACT Party is disappointed that Labour and the Greens have voted down our Bill to allow businesses to trade over Easter weekend,” says ACT’s Small Business spokesperson Chris Baillie.

“Labour MPs stood one by one to show their opposition, with Liz Craig going as far as saying she doesn’t support weekend trading.

“My Member’s Bill would have would have removed the extra burden on businesses by relieving restrictions on trading on Good Friday and Easter Sunday.

“Following the pain businesses have been through with Covid restrictions, this would have been warmly welcomed.

“Sadly Labour MPs didn’t appear to have read the bill, claiming they were protecting workers when the Bill specifically said it retains the existing employee protections that apply in respect of Easter Sunday and extends these protections to Good Friday.

“What’s even more galling, is the Labour caucus approved a similar bill to go in the Ballot from Kieran McAnulty. Labour showed it won’tallow even a small improvement to the law if it’s not their idea. It should have been sent to Select Committee.

“As a bar owner I know firsthand what it’s like to run a small business. My staff have to lecture adults on Easter Sunday that they can have a drink if they order a salad, but not if they order fries. They have time limits about how quickly they have eat if they have a drink. It’s just nuts.

“We had a practical solution in parliament and it’s a shame that this antiquated law remains in place.”

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