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18 November 2019

McDonald’s recently withdrew the proposed Agreement that was voted on and supported by employees in May 2019. They are now seeking to have the current expired McDonald’s Agreement continue until 3 February 2020. If successful, the effect of this would be to keep McDonald’s workers on lower weekend and public holiday penalty rates than would otherwise apply.

The SDA opposes this and is arguing that the conditions of the Fast Food Industry Award, in particular the penalty rates, should apply as soon as possible.

The SDA has requested McDonald’s to pass on the higher penalty rates you would receive under the Fast Food Industry Award, to be paid to you within 21 days.

A hearing was held this week in the Fair Work Commission arguing about this issue and when the Fast Food Industry Award should apply.

The SDA is disappointed by the McDonald’s decision to withdraw the proposed Agreement as it was important to provide you security and improvements to your pay and conditions.

However, the SDA plays a central role securing improvements to the Fast Food Industry Award, ensuring it provides:

  • Fair minimum pay and conditions;
  • Defending minimum shift entitlements for casuals;
  • Winning casual conversion rights; and
  • Securing pay rises in the Annual Wage Review each year.

We are continuing to work hard throughout this process to represent your best interests.

The SDA will update you with any outcomes from the hearing in the Fair Work Commission.

If you have any questions about this or any other workplace matter, please call the SDA

The SDA is fighting to protect your pay & conditions

Disappointingly, McDonald’s withdrew the application for the approval of the McDonald’s Agreement in Fair Work Commission on 27 September 2019.

That’s why the SDA has now filed an application to terminate the current McDonald’s Agreement which sets out your pay and conditions.

It’s our priority, as always, to ensure your pay is protected.

If our application is successful, you will be covered by the Fast Food Industry Award.

The SDA’s application to terminate the Agreement seeks to protect your pay and conditions to ensure you continue to be paid the higher base rates of pay you currently receive if you move to the Fast Food Industry Award.

We will keep you updated with information throughout this process.

If you have any questions, please call the SDA

Work at Macca's? Stay up to date.

UPDATE: Earlier this year, the proposed McDonald’s Agreement 2019 was approved by McDonald’s workers with a 59% yes vote.

The proposed Agreement went to the Fair Work Commission for approval. However, McDonald’s have now withdrawn the McDonald’s Agreement for approval.

This means the Company will no longer seek to put the new Agreement in place.

It is our understanding the Company withdrew the proposed Agreement primarily because of uncertainty about registration requirements for the approval process as a result of some of the Fair Work Commission’s recent decisions. It is frustrating that the process to put new agreements in place that provide improvements to workers is not simpler and fairer.

The SDA is disappointed by this decision because, after extensive negotiations, the proposal would have protected many of your current conditions and delivered improvements that are superior to the Fast Food Industry Award.

While we did not reach agreement on all issues, we believe the proposed Agreement along with some straight forward undertakings would have secured improved outcomes for workers and provided you security about your pay and conditions over the next few years.

What happens now?

The SDA will now work through possible next steps with the best interest of members in mind.

At present you remain covered by the current McDonald’s Agreement which provides your pay and conditions.

The SDA will continue to represent your best interests throughout this process and work hard to deliver important improvements to your pay and conditions.

If you have any questions, please call the SDA

We will keep you updated with more information.

UPDATE: The new McDonald’s Agreement has been approved by McDonald’s workers in a ballot with a 59% yes vote. The Agreement will now go to the Fair Work Commission for approval and the SDA will be raising several key issues during this process to ensure the best interests of McDonald’s workers.

We will keep SDA members updated throughout this process.

Important information for McDonald’s workers

The SDA has continued to meet with McDonald’s over the past few weeks to secure a new McDonald’s Agreement that protects and improves your pay and conditions.

Despite extensive discussions between the SDA and McDonald’s, we are disappointed with the progress on some key items.

Importantly, the SDA and McDonald’s have not yet agreed on:

1.     Wages and wage increases

2.     Penalty rates: to ensure penalty rates in the Agreement never fall below those in the Fast Food Industry Award

We have been pushing for improved penalty rates, wage increases for everyone and to secure your existing hard-won conditions.

The SDA continues to work hard to reach an Agreement that delivers the best possible outcomes for members because we believe you deserve better.

We will keep you updated throughout this process.

If you have any questions, please call the SDA.

Yesterday the SDA met with McDonald’s to start negotiations for a new McDonald’s Agreement.

Before negotiations, we spoke to SDA members and surveyed McDonald’s employees across the country about important workplace issues.

We used your feedback to compile a list of issues and conditions to form a Log of Claims.

The SDA presented this Log of Claims to the Company yesterday and bargaining has now commenced.

Throughout negotiations it is our priority to:

  • Protect the take-home pay of employees;
  • Improve penalty rates
  • Secure hard-won SDA conditions

We will continue to keep SDA members up to date with the latest news from negotiations.

SDA Organisers have been out in stores talking to McDonald’s workers about your pay and conditions.

Before any negotiations for a new McDonald’s Agreement begin, we want to hear from you.

If you haven’t taken our survey in store, get in touch with your local SDA Branch.

Remember, having your say is important. Over decades of bargaining McDonald’s Agreements, the SDA and members like you have won:

  • Regular pay rises
  • Improved rostering provisions
  • Superior leave conditions
  • Some of the highest pay rates in the fast food industry

Let us know what’s important to you so we can take your feedback when negotiations with the Company begin.

We will keep you updated throughout this process.

Further technical steps have been completed this week to commence bargaining.

The Notification of Employee Representational Rights (NERR) has been issued which is the formal notice for commencement of bargaining.

The SDA expects to start negotiations with the Company for a new McDonald’s Agreement soon.

As the union for McDonald’s workers, the SDA will represent you in negotiations with the Company.

Securing a new McDonald’s Agreement is the best way to secure your pay and conditions going forward.

Before any negotiations begin we will be surveying members about what you want in your McDonald’s Agreement.

We will then take your feedback to form a set of claims (log of claims) to take to the Company.

Remember, having your say is important.

We will keep you updated throughout this process.


The Proposed McDonald's Agreement

For the past few months, the SDA and McDonald’s have been negotiating to secure a new Agreement for McDonald’s workers.

Whilst McDonald’s and the SDA were able to agree on a number of new provisions, we were not able to agree on the entirety of the final proposal.

Currently at McDonald’s workers are paid a higher rate of pay than the award for all time worked instead of some night and weekend penalties. During negotiations, the SDA secured the introduction of new Penalty Rates after 10pm and on Saturdays and Sundays.

Key changes of the proposed Agreement include:
» New weekend and weeknight penalty rates but with lower base rates of pay – though protections apply
» A new laundry allowance of $1.25 per shift
» Agreement closely aligned to Fast Food Award
» Introduction of casual conversion clause
» Changes to or removal of a number of conditions

Please read this information carefully and if you have any questions about the proposed Agreement please speak to your SDA Organiser or call the SDA.

The SDA has been opposed to the agreement. The biggest single reason for opposing the agreement was that McDonald’s did not agree to pass on to employees any higher Sunday penalty rates legislated by a newly elected Labor Government. This would have left McDonald’s employees worse off on a Sunday than other fast food workers.

However the Labor Party was not elected as the Federal Government last Saturday.  It appears unlikely that there will be any increase in Sunday penalty rates.

This is a changed circumstance from last week – in fact a big change.

During the negotiations the SDA secured in the proposed new agreement:

  • new penalty rates from 10pm until 6am, and
  • new penalty rates all day Saturday and all day Sunday as well as
  • a new laundry allowance of $1.25 per shift.

The SDA had other concerns with the agreement including we were looking for a higher wage increase, we want the crew trainer allowance not to cease on 1 July 2021 but continue on, and we do not support the $80 uniform deposit for new employees. We also want to retain a number of superior conditions from the existing agreement.

If a majority of employees at McDonald’s vote in favour of the proposed new enterprise agreement we will argue in the Fair Work Commission for several improvements in the agreement including:

  • We will argue that there should be no $80 uniform deposit for new employees.
  • We will argue that all employees working 4 hours or more must get a paid 10 minute tea break.

You now have the information to make an informed decision on the proposed new agreement.

The proposed Agreement has base rates of pay that are one cent above the base rates in the Fast Food Industry Award. Existing employees will retain their current rate of pay for ordinary hours but their pay rate during penalty times will be based off the new rates. The current Agreement contains higher base rates of pay with lower penalty rates while the proposed Agreement has lower base rates of pay with higher penalty rates.

Hourly Rates prior to 1st July 2019 are below. From the 1st of July 2019 McDonald’s will pay 1 cent above the Fast Food Award rate of pay (unless you are on a protected pay rate).

For washing your McDonald’s uniform, you will be paid:

$6.25 for a full-time team member per week
$1.25 per shift for a part-time or casual team member

You won’t receive this if McDonald’s launders your uniform.

Wages will increase based on the pay rise the SDA, with the ACTU, secures at the Fair Work Commission in July each year that goes into Award Rates. McDonald’s has offered to pay 1 cent per hour more than the rate set in the Fast Food Industry Award.


The SDA has worked hard to ensure your existing rate of pay is protected. Under the proposed Agreement, your current rate of pay will continue to apply.

This means for any hours you work between 6am and 10pm Monday to Friday you will be paid your existing ordinary rate of pay until the Agreement rate is higher. For work on weekends or after 10pm, you will receive the proposed Agreement rate plus penalty loading.

The protected rate will stop once the new base rate equals or exceeds it. This will occur as workers move to a higher junior % aswell.

The SDA was disappointed that McDonald’s did not offer any pay increases to existing employees’ base rates.

The proposed Agreement includes the penalty rates that the SDA has secured and defended in the Fast Food Award. Penalty rates will be paid on top of the new base rates – not your existing higher base rate.

The SDA is disappointed that there is no crew trainers under the proposed Agreement. Employees who currently receive the crew trainer allowance will continue to earn it until it is removed in July 2021.

The proposed Agreement provides for the following breaks:


The SDA will argue in the Fair Work Commission that all employees working 4 hours must receive one 10-minute paid break and those working 9 hours must receive 2 x 10 minute paid breaks, instead of the Company’s shorter breaks proposal.

For Level 2 or 3 employees, rather than the unpaid meal break, you’ll receive a paid 30 minute break, taken throughout the shift based on operational requirements where you are not released completely from work. It can be broken into shorter periods. This time doesn’t count as time worked in calculating your ordinary hours of work. The SDA will argue in the Fair Work Commission that this option will only apply if the employee agrees.

By mutual agreement, a Level 1 employee on an overnight shift may take a paid 20 minute crib break instead of an unpaid meal break. An overnight shift is between 10pm and 6am.

The proposed Agreement has a different method for engaging part time team members.
When first employed, it will be agreed, in writing, on a regular pattern of work, specifying:

i. the hours worked each day;
ii. which days of the week to work;
iii. the actual starting and finishing times of each day;
iv. that any variation will be in writing;
v. minimum daily engagement is 3 hours;

Any agreement to vary the regular pattern of work will be in writing before the varied hours commence.

The proposed Agreement allows part-time employees to do additional hours. Additional hours must be agreed in writing and paid at the appropriate rate of pay for the time worked (including penalties). You can agree to do additional hours in advance by giving standing consent If you have provided standing consent you may still refuse to work Additional Hours which are offered to you.

If you voluntarily* attend a meeting, when you’re not working a rostered shift, you’ll be paid an allowance of at least one hour at your Ordinary Hourly Rate of pay, (plus penalties). If the meeting is longer than one hour, you’ll be paid for the duration of the meeting.

*If you are required to attend then it’s not voluntary and should be paid for a minimum of 3 hours

The proposed agreement contains a refundable deposit for your uniform. The SDA does not believe this is permitted in an agreement as there is no provision for a uniform deposit in the Fast Food Industry Award.

The proposed clause allows McDonald’s to deduct $80 from your pay either as a one-off deduction or4 x $20 deductions or 8 x $10 deductions. Some other arrangement as agreed may also apply.

Given the proposed wage premium is only 1c per hour above the Award rate of pay it would take at least 3 years work at full time hours to cover the cost of the $80 deposit, if you are working 12 hours a week it would take you over 9 years to cover this cost from your wage premium. This cannot leave McDonald’s employees better off overall.

The deposit will be repaid to you if you return your full uniform in good condition, other than normal wear and tear, within four weeks of leaving McDonald’s.

If you lose, or damage an item of McDonald’s uniform, you authorise McDonald’s to deduct from your pay a further amount up the value of a replacement item of uniform.

The SDA will oppose this provision at the Fair Work Commission.

If you are overpaid, McDonald’s will have the automatic right to deduct from your future pay the full amount of the overpayment. McDonald’s will advise you in writing of the amount of, and the reason for the overpayment.

Such a provision is not usually found in agreements as it is not a right employers have automatically. An employee usually has to agree
to such a deduction but McDonald’s want this as their right.

Under the proposed Agreement, you can be rostered for 11 hours per day. Currently, you have 9.5 hours as the maximum.

If you are a permanent employee, your roster will be given to you 5 days in advance.

Full-time employees will no longer have the right to 2 consecutive days off a week and 1 rostered weekend off per month.

Part-time employees will no longer have the right to a minimum guarantee of 10 hours per week as the proposed agreement reduces this to 3 hours and the right to two consecutive days off per week.

Casual employees will no longer have a limit on the number of days they can work in a row.

Casual employees who have worked a regular roster for more than 12 months are able to formally apply for permanent work. This was made possible due to the successful SDA/ACTU case at the Fair Work Commission.

A level 2 or 3 employee can be paid twice a month.

Pay averaging has been removed from the Agreement.

The SDA has defended the following above Award leave conditions that remain in the proposed Agreement:

» Better Jury Service Leave
» Better Defence Force Leave
» Blood Donor Leave (but entitlement halved)
» Emergency Services Leave (2 days paid time off, which may be increased at McDonald’s discretion)
» Natural Disaster Leave (up to 2 days paid leave)
» Bone Marrow Donor Leave
» Compassionate Leave (but will be reduced from 3 days of leave to 2 days)

McDonald’s has not agreed to set a not for profit default fund for superannuation contributions. This means if you do not make a choice, your individual employer may have a superannuation fund that is not in the award approved list, where your super will be sent. After the Banking Royal Commission it is concerning to be moving away from not for profit superannuation funds.

» No penalty payable if you work through your meal break
» No longer to be paid at a higher rate if you perform at higher classification (i.e. take on the role of a supervisor for a single shift)
» First aid allowance $11.18 per week (FT): Loss of $11.18 per week for full time employees and $2.23 per shift for Part-Time and casual employees.
» A permanent employee will no longer receive another day off if a Public Holiday falls on their non working day.
» No overtime paid if 10 hour break between shifts is not taken.
» No right to take a dispute with McDonald’s to the Fair Work Commission for arbitration unless McDonald’s agree.
» Loss of the right for unpaid leave of up to 12 months for a range of reasons.
» No Allowances for NT employees that ranged from $9.30 to $16.60 per week
» General Maintenance Employee – Junior % will now apply instead of adult rates for all employees


If you have any questions or concerns please speaks to your SDA Organiser or contact the SDA. The SDA will provide updates as this process progresses.

Your McDonald’s Agreement sets out your pay and conditions at work. As the union for McDonald’s workers, it is the SDA’s priority to:
  • Protect the take-home pay of employees;
  • Improve penalty rates
  • Secure hard-won SDA union conditions

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