Should all businesses be treated equal? Let the 7 day trading division begin

After a massive turn out at the council meeting last night, it has been decided to consult with the community over whether or not to introduce 7 day trading across the board.

To be clear, small businesses already have the right to trade 7 days, but most of them want to keep that monopoly and prevent larger businesses like Coles and Woolworths from having the same privilege.

They argue it will hurt the community as a whole if more shops open their doors on a Sunday, with volunteer organisations like sporting clubs adversely affected being unable to get volunteers, especially from the young people who would work at these stores. 

The argument is made, however, that places like McDonalds and Bunnings employ a lot of these people already, and have the freedom to trade on a Sunday.

Some people believe that the move to stop larger businesses from having the same rights as smaller businesses is typical Australian tall poppy syndrome, where if someone works hard and grows their business putting on more staff, they will ultimately be considered a threat to business owners that are not as successful or innovative.

Certainly, retailers know that if they hire too many people, they will loose their freedom. Businesses that trade each Sunday deliberately ensure they don't over staff so they won't be forced to shut. Laws like this, it is argued, are actually hurting employment growth. 

To not introduce 7 day trading seems counter intuitive to the city's push to try and appeal to tourists. One of the biggest complaints about Geraldton you will see on Twitter and Facebook is that "nothing is open".

Community reactions to the suggestion of equal rights for larger and smaller retailers has been rather mixed. Many Geraldton residents claim it would make their lives easier, and want it in a flash. Others are staunchly opposed to it, fearing the impact on family life for small businesses is the very thing Geraldton needs to avoid.

Have your say. Sound off in the comments, and get in touch with your local councilors  if you have an opinion one way or the other. 

Jason Smith

Founder of Everything Geraldton, Everything Mandurah, & Everything Perth. Law Student. Father, Husband, Bitcoin, Cigars.