A Labour MP has tabled a bill in Parliament to reduce the working week to four days for all employees. But do you think the UK should adopt a four-day working week? Vote in our poll. Peter Dowd, MP for Bootle has said that British workers are “long overdue a shorter working week”. Under the plans, the working week would be reduced to 32 hours, giving “every British worker the chance of moving to a four-day week”.
The bill pledges to amend the Working Time Regulations Act 1998 to reduce the maximum working week from 48 hours to 32 – effectively mandating a four-day working week.
To ensure that the incomes of low-paid and underemployed workers are protected, any work above 32 hours should be paid 1.5 times their ordinary rate of pay.
Mr Dowd said: “I am introducing this legislation because we’re long overdue a shorter working week.
“In the UK, workers put in some of the longest working hours across Europe while pay and productivity remains low in comparison.
“In numerous examples across the world, the four-day week with no loss of pay has been shown to boost productivity and the wellbeing of workers.”
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The bill is due to be discussed in the House of Commons in mid-October and is the first of its kind to reach Parliament.
Some 3,300 workers across 70 companies in the UK are currently taking part in a four-day working week trial.
The six-month trial organised by non-profit 4 Day Week Global started in June and has seen employees working in a 100:80:100 model.
This means they receive full pay for 80 percent of their previous working hours with a commitment to 100 percent productivity.
Will Stronge, director of research at Autonomy, said: “The benefits of a four-day week for the wellbeing of workers and boosting productivity are well known, but the impact it could have on the cost of living has so far been overlooked.
“A four-day week with no loss of pay could play a crucial role in supporting workers to make ends meet over the next few years.”
They calculated that a person with a child under two would annually save £1,440 in childcare and £340 on their commute.
Last week, South Cambridgeshire District Council announced plans to become the first UK local authority to pilot the four-day week with no loss in pay.
So what do YOU think? Should the UK adopt a four-day working week? Vote in our poll and join the debate in the comment section below.