A push to remove penalty pay rates on Saturdays and Sundays would be "the end of the weekend as we know it", according to a trade union national president.
This month penalty rates, which Australians have received since 1919, have attracted criticism on a number of fronts.
Businesses have complained that they are such an onerous burden that it hardly makes opening on weekends worth the effort.
Myer has even threatened to close some of its stores on Sundays.
Also, federal politicians are looking to remove penalty rates for those working in small businesses.
This push comes at a time when the Fair Work Act is also under review, so penalty rates are now under the spotlight.
The Illawarra Business Chamber (IBC) is one organisation that has put a submission to the review. IBC chief executive Mike Leask said penalty rates were hampering businesses across the Illawarra and the country.
"The key issue is that we live in a 24-7 society these days and business needs to be able to adapt and be flexible to the demands of the market," Mr Leask said.
"What we're finding is that there are too many restrictive practices within the Fair Work Act, which don't allow businesses to be flexible and be able to structure workforces to meet those demands without incurring penalty rates."
The United Voice trade union represents employees in the hospitality sector and national president Michael Crosby criticised any move to strike out weekend penalties.
"The weekend is special in Australia," Mr Crosby said.
"Saturdays and Sundays are not like the other days of the week. They are the days when we catch up with our family and friends, when we attend sport and observe our religious practices and when we join in community events.
"We believe that getting rid of penalty rates for working on weekends would spell the end of the weekend as we know it."
Not all restaurant owners would like to see the end of weekend penalties. Murphy's Bar and Grill owner Joy Wells is in favour of employees being paid extra on weekends.
"Why should you give up your time with your children for no benefit?" she said.
Two sides to argument: P26