A) The relevant Award is the General Retail Industry Award 2010 (‘the Award’). The Award distinguishes between rest breaks and meal breaks. An employee is to be paid for rest breaks, but not for meal breaks.
The breaks required depend on the hours worked. If an employee works less than four hours, they are not entitled to any breaks. If they work between four and five hours, they are entitled to one ten minute rest break. For a shift between five and seven hours, an employee is entitled to one ten minute rest break, and a meal break of 30-60 minutes duration.
It should be noted that an employee cannot work more than five hours without a meal break. If an employee works between seven and ten hours, they are entitled to two ten minute rest breaks, and a meal break between 30-60 minutes. The first rest break should be taken in the first half of the shift, and the second break is to be taken in the final half of the shift. For a shift of more than ten hours, the employee is also entitled to two ten minute rest breaks, with the same requirement that they are split between each half of the shift. They are also entitled to two meal breaks of 30-60 minutes each.
You are not permitted to combine rest and meal breaks, and breaks are not to be taken within one hour of commencing or ceasing work.
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