The resilience of our sector continues to be tested with rising cost-of-living and business cost pressures – from acute supply chain issues, and staff shortages to the rising cost of energy, fuel and materials.
These challenges occur with the backdrop of the Fair Work Commission decision handed down today for a 5.2% wage increase to the minimum wage effective 1 July. Whilst the ARA supported a fair and balanced increase to the minimum wage, we are concerned the scale of this increase could tip some businesses over the edge. The ARA’s response to the decision can be found here. The ARA is providing additional support information about the increase to members.
On the positive side, the economic challenges have not had an immediate impact on consumer spending. Retail sales remain healthy overall in the face of rising interest rates. Whether this will continue in the longer term remains to be seen. As people start to tighten their household budgets, we could see sales start to soften in discretionary retail categories in particular.
First Responders Day is coming up on Thursday 30 June, and we remind members to rally behind this important cause, sign up and register their offers. Thank you to those who have already submitted their discounts and for acknowledging our frontline heroes and everything they do to keep our communities safe.
As always, our membership team is here to help and can be contacted via email or on 1300 368 041.