Your say: Hospitality workers have families too

READERS of The Northern Star have reacted strongly after a Ballina motelier called on restaurants and the Ballina Shire Council to do better next year to cater for the influx of visitors.

The motelier said his guests, after travelling half way across the world, found themselves with barely anywhere open to feed them and suggested that a roster system allowing restaurants to avoid having to operate for all of Christmas Day should be put in place.

On our Facebook page, the thread was overwhelmed with comments, many of them mentioning the family aspect of Christmas:

"People who work in hospitality have family that they would love to spend the day with," Robyn Stanford pointed out.

"I think that is the height of rudeness. I'm assuming you have a kitchen... cook for them! People who work in hospitality have family they want to spend time with too!" Kristy Patison said.

"Everyone should be prepared for nothing open Christmas day," Tony Den said.

"No-one should be inconvenienced by other's that are too lazy and don't use their brain's. Christmas day is a day to relax not to work FULL STOP. SO SHOULD EVERY SUNDAY get some family values back not use it for so called PROFITS. FAMILIES BEFORE DOLLARS."

However, Geraldine Willis pointed out this: "So many of you are complaining about 'we have families too' but interestingly enough none of you seem concerned about those who work in retail, who only get Christmas day closed, or nursing and health and care practitioners who don't get any closing day. I suppose you assume people in those fields don't have families? They do but still make it work."

Some people jumped in to say what a good business decision they thought opening during holidays would be.

"Supply and demand people. 'Too bad so sad' is just not a realistic attitude. It's the highest tourist rate time of the year," Geraldine Willis said.

"If there's a market for it, it needs to be addressed. I think you're all ignoring the 'roster system' part too. Rosters mean everyone can have time off at one point or other."

"If I'm not mistaken the Northern Rivers has the highest number of business closures in Australia," Lee Young said.

"If you own a business and in a tourist town/ area you HAVE to do the hard yards, 'make hay while the sun shines'. Don't get me wrong there are plenty of local business that do stay open longer but It still amazes me that so many business close early."

"Ballina and the whole Northern Rivers is an amazing place to visit and live and we should embrace what we have. There's never been a better time for small business and 2016 should be a great year if you're prepared to work."

Corina Piggott the situation was "very embarrassing for a tourist destination".

"They obviously need a bit of competition, a business happy to employ enough staff to cope with the demand and that stays open, to reap in all those tourist dollars."

Of the negative comments on the thread towards the idea of a roster during public holidays, Scott Cowles said: "Typical Northern Rivers. Someone throws an idea out there and it gets shut down."

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