Should the taking of annual leave be made compulsory in Australia?

Document Type

Conference publication

Publication details

Cairncross, G & Waller, I 2004, 'Should the taking of annual leave be made compulsory in Australia?' in Proceedings: 18th Association of Industrial Relations Academics of Australia and New Zealand (AIRAANZ) Conference, Noosa, Qld, 3-6 February.

The publisher version of this paper is available from: http://www.airaanz.org/2004-conference-main.html


Australians work longer hours than most other OECD nations and are not effectively using their full annual leave entitlements. According to National Occupational Health and Safety Commission figures workplace accidents and diseases may cost the Australian economy $37 billion per annum. However, even this figure may be out of date and understated because it does not include the costs of workplace stress. This is a workplace health issue that studies show can be ameliorated by holidays. Workplace stress, may be a major cost to the economy. This paper considers the connections between these issues and outlines an agenda for future research so as to increase our understanding of the importance of the taking of annual leave to the people and economy of Australia.