Will you be opening your business on Boxing Day?
Well it seems to be hot topic at the moment, people are unhappy with having to work on Boxing Day, especially if they were working late on Christmas Eve and I agree with them. There are currently two petitions which have gained a lot of support in the matter (I’ve linked both of them below if you want to take a closer look or if you would like to sign):
A Change.org petition was created by Ian Lapworth around 2 months ago and at the time of this article has 233,961 signatures. It is titled ‘Stop Shops Opening on Boxing Day!’ and the description includes statements such as
‘Shops, especially supermarkets, do not need to open on Boxing Day.’
‘Forget making money for one day, let’s concentrate on making more memories with the ones we love.’.
You can also read some of the reasons why people have signed on the page, if you so wish.
On the government’s official website a petition was created by Jack Johnson and has 142,561 signatures at the moment. It is called ‘Close all retail on boxing day, retail isn’t needed on boxing day!’ and states that
‘Some things are needed over the festive period, retail isn’t one of them.’
As the latter was on the government’s website and gained over 100,000 signatures, it was debated in parliament on the 12th December. You can watch the debate or read the full transcript of the debate by following the link to the petition above, but the short response was “We do not believe it is for central Government to tell businesses how to run their shops or how best to serve their customers. Therefore we are not proposing to ban shops from opening on Boxing Day.” (you can also read their full response by following the link). So it looks like the shops won’t be shutting just yet, but if the signatures keep coming in, there may be changes in the future.
Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour are said to support the call for shops to be closed on Boxing Day, with the shadow business minister saying “Labour supports our 2.7 million retail workers, their families and those retailers who want to act responsibly without the increasing pressure to bring their staff in for ever-longer hours over the Christmas period,” according to the Huffington Post UK.
The man responsible for the first petition also made the point that 30-40 years ago, shops didn’t open on Boxing Day, some not for an entire week and everyone managed just fine. But when looking at it from a business point of view, it is supply and demand. If people are willing to go out and spend money then businesses will open. The petitions are also big on the retail sector but what about all the others, emergency services, hospitals, care homes, they don’t shut down because it is boxing day and that’s because they can’t. If we, at Black Rebel Group had a client that needed our services urgently through the festive period we would accept and get the work done.
I did say earlier that I agreed with people being unhappy to work boxing day especially if they are working Christmas eve and that is true. If staff are working Christmas eve, they shouldn’t have to work boxing day or if they are working through Christmas, then they should have the new year off and vice versa, it’s only fair. I know this doesn’t happen but it should, however I don’t think it is likely that the government will force businesses to close boxing day any time soon.
Black Rebel Group will not be opening on Boxing Day (If you were wondering), but we want to know your thoughts on this topic. Should businesses open? Are you opening your business? and if so, why? Let us know in the comments.
And as this is the last post before Christmas,
from all at Black Rebel Group Ltd