If George Calombaris Believes In Fair Pay He Should Give Some Of His Back
George Calombaris has managed to piss me off and he is not even bouncing on our TV screens in Masterchef Australia.
Yesterday George Calombaris took aim at Julia Gillard’s Fair Work Laws saying that paying penalty rates were crippling his business.
In an interview with the Power Index he moaned:
“The problem is that wages on public holidays and weekends greatly exceed the opportunity for profit…It’s just not a good business practice to be paying penalty rates. It’s really difficult to stay open and we only do it because of tourism but the reality is it’s uneconomical.”
“So our labour laws are something that need to be looked at and we keep talking about it.”
Morale must have been pretty low in George’s many restaurants last night, knowing that he did not think he should have to pay higher rates on the days of the week that people traditionally spend with family and friends.
Also I suspect George may have conveniently forgotten that he was probably paid penalty rates when he was younger and working as an employee.
He would probably prefer the US model where the customer subsidises the wage cost, with a minimum wage of $2.00 an hour and the diner is expected to tip 20 per cent of the bill to make up the wage short fall.
In the article George mentions his outgoings, one of which is a $45,000 pasta machine. A machine he has bought to decrease the labour required in the kitchen, something I don’t have a problem with, however, whining about paying minimum award wages for the staff you do have is a bit off, particularly when you own multiple business.
Let’s get this straight he is not some struggling small business owner.
George should also know that if the service is no good in his high end restaurants then the customer won’t come back no matter how good the food is. These people are essential in ensuring George can buy his imported cars, or just ensure that his partner does not have to work and look after their child full time. A luxury a lot of families don’t have these days.
Seriously George appears to follow the Gerry Harvey business model where laws and policies should be there to ensure more money can be made on the millions they already have.
News flash George – These laws are in place to ensure unscrupulous employers have wages and conditions in place for people who due to education or life circumstances are unable to negotiate for themselves. For example like new immigrants who George’s parents once were.
Also if you are so fixated about fair wages what about giving some of yours back for the dud ratings Junior Masterchef produced in 2011, a show he was host and judge on.
UPDATE: The debate continues on this blog here with this guy writing an interesting article.
An issue I have been thinking about since seeing this tweet from Gary Mehigan who tweets @crispycrackling “George takes hammering over penalty rates, but the big question “is the weekend still family day? Half day closing Saturday & closed Sunday?”
By the way I think Gary looks pretty good in his twitter avatar maybe he lost some weight in the Masterchef off season.
Now I really need to move onto another story as this is not trashy reality blog not a political one, however the question must be asked is whether Sunday is now family day for the middle class, and if you are poor, a new migrant or a student it should just be considered another work day.