Paramount takes staff stance on Australia Day

Staff at Paramount / 10 given the option to recognise January 26 or not.

Paramount ANZ staff have been given the option of working on January 26 if they do not feel comfortable celebrating Australia Day.

In a note to staff co-leads Beverley McGarvey & Jarrod Villani wrote, “At Paramount ANZ we aim to create a safe place to work where cultural differences are appreciated, understood and respected. For our First Nations people, we as an organisation acknowledge that January 26 is not a day of celebration. We recognise that there has been a turbulent history, particularly around that date and the recognition of that date being Australia Day.

“We recognise that January 26 evokes different emotions for our employees across the business and we are receptive to employees who do not feel comfortable taking this day as a public holiday,” they wrote.

The US-owned network has joined a small but growing list of organisations, particularly in the advertising sector, which is recognising divisions around the date of colonisation. Yesterday the gesture drew headlines and commentary from sections of the media.

This year staff have the option to take the official public holiday or work with another day substituted in lieu.

The National Employment Standards also provides provision to allow employees and employers to substitute any public holiday for another day.

“Upon individual requests, all employees will have the option to work on January 26 and substitute the public holiday for another day in line with business requirements and approval from their manager,” said McGarvey & Villani.

“Whether you choose to work on January 26 or take the public holiday, we ask that you reflect and respect the different perspectives and viewpoints of all Australians.”

In recent years 10 has broadcast a January 26 Sunrise Ceremony in conjunction with NITV and Australia Day Concert last in 2018.

Source: The Australian

18 Responses

  1. Ten has far bigger problems than grandstanding on these kinds of issues, but sure sounds like they have changed their tune about Australia Day within a few short years.
    Go woke while going broke I guess.

  2. As January 26th is an official public holiday, aren’t employers obligated to pay anyone who works that day penalty rates? This isn’t something that companies can determine themselves – it’s an award issue. Salaried staff will be able to take an alternative day off, but casual employees will need to be paid penalty rates if they work on the public holiday (whether Paramount/TEN are recognising it as a holiday or not).

  3. Remember when this was the fun, family network who once embraced the annual Australia Day in Sydney (until 2018 anyway)

    Let Ten themselves jog your memory! 10play.com.au/australia-day-live-at-sydney-opera-house/articles

    1. It’s been a long time since their has been a test match on Australia Day. The last test this season is Sydney in the first week of January. If Ten do get the rights, they’ll still show any cricket on Australia Day. This memo just gives employees the option of substituting the public holiday.

  4. Move the goalposts or rearrange the deck chairs it doesn’t matter what date “Australia Day” is celebrated it will still be a contentious issue until there is hopefully a resolution …if any.

  5. The way some people are carrying you’d think Ten are the only employer doing this. Similar to what’s noted in the article above, plenty of other organisations, both private and public sector, are doing similar things. And essentially, employees can still take Australia Day off if they want to, they’re just being given the option to take an alternative.

    I’ve heard of at least one employer (not media) also doing the same for Melbourne Cup Day and giving people the option to take an alternative day off then.

    1. There’s talk of boycotts, particularly in the echo chamber I could be in. However I thought about it and remembered apart for the Neighbours final week and Carries sign off on The Project I haven’t watched Ten at all this year. That trend is set to continue. Politics don’t belong in corporate Australia or sport. Rather then unifying these decisions just drive deeper division.

      1. Yeah, I realised I’ve watched more 10 this year than in recent years. HYBPA, Gogglebox and the last dozen eps of Neighbours.10 News was my go-to as I was cooking dinner but since they “went national” I haven’t bothered. I’m not sure how much 10 I’ll watch next year. I’ll keep those in the schedule above and check out Taskmaster but that’s because I’m a fan of the format. Other than that I don’t see my engagement levels changing.

  6. It’s interesting how people have started in with the “woke or go broke” stuff again directed at this.

    There are a lot of different views around Australia Day and all I see is 10 trying to be respectful of all views and give everyone a choice.

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