Find below selected resources on long work hours from:
TUC - Work loads : Excessive workloads, job cuts and rapid change are the most common triggers for rising stress levels amongst employees, a TUC survey has found. TUC news release
TUC - The Working Time Directive Review: Slaying the Myths : Why employers' organisations are wrong about the 48-hour week
TUC - Long hours working is the biggest demon for UK families The TUC's submission to the Government's flexible work consultation says UK's long hours culture is damaging people's personal lives and reinforcing the gender pay gap, as women juggle paid work with the care of children and older relatives while their partners work the longest hours in Europe. - TUC news release
TUC - "Time for sensible compromise on working time " The TUC calls for a phase out of the 48 hour a week limit working time opt-out. Briefing
TUC - biennial survey of safety reps 2004 Stress problem Three in every five complain of being stressed at work. TUC found the main causes of stress are increased workloads, change at work, staff cuts, long hours and bullying. TUC news release and TUC survey stress and overwork chapter
TUC - Working hours campaigns
More research publications from the TUC
TUC/Working Familes More time for families: tackling the long hours crisis in UK workplaces [pdf]
Work smarter not longer says government Working smarter is key to improving employee satisfaction and productivity says a joint DTI, TUC and CBI guide to tackling long hours culture. BERR news release - Managing change: Practical ways to reduce long hours and reform working practices [pdf] - BERR long hours project webpages
Department for Business Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Working Time Regulations
Department of Health: Hospital nights Hospital at Night, a model of shift patterns and staffing mix for the NHS to use in response to the European Working Time Directive has delivered improvements to patient care. DH news release.
Studies show workers are missing out A study from Institute for Social and Economic Research shows UK workers are missing out on work-life balance and would like shorter working hours. Taking the long view: The ISER report 2004/5
Firms are not learning long hours lesson The average British manager works the equivalent of 40 days a year in unpaid overtime, a survey has revealed. CMI news release
Unwelcome return of the long hours culture An extra 180,000 people across
the UK are now working more than 48 hours a week, according to a TUC analysis
of official statistics. The figures, included in a new TUC report, 'The return
of the long hours culture', show the number of people working long hours has
increased at a faster rate over 2008 than the decline in excessive working
between 1998 and 2006.
TUC news release and report, The return of the long hours culture [pdf]
Mixed progress on agency and hours laws The UK government will keep its opt-out from the European Union's 48 hour weekly work ceiling, but has agreed a series of improvements to working time rules. TUC news release and briefing on changes to working time rules • BERR news release
Depressing overload: If you work a lot of overtime, especially on low income
or doing heavy manual labour, you're at increased risk of anxiety and depression.
Elisabeth Kleppa, Bjarte Sanne and Grethe S Tell. Working overtime is associated with anxiety and depression: The Hordaland Health Study, Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, volume 50, number 6, pages 658-666, June 2008 [abstract]
Unions reduce long hours burden UK workers still work the longest hours in Western Europe, but UK unions have been particularly effective in winning shorter hours for their members. A new report from Eurofound reveals full-time employees in the UK put in 41.4 hours per week. This is 1 hour and 24 minutes more than the average for all EU countries including the 12 new Eastern European countries and 1 hour and 54 minutes more than the average for the old 15 Western European EU members. Only workers in Bulgaria and Romania average longer hours. The report found UK unions have been among the most effective in negotiating reasonable working hours. TUC news release • Eurofound news release and full report.
Europe: More work hours mean less balance Long hours are a major barrier to work-life balance, a new Europe-wide survey has confirmed. The findings of the Fourth European Working Conditions Survey, published on 21 February 2007, are based on responses from 30,000 workers in 31 countries on issues including work organisation, working time, equal opportunities, training, health and safety and job satisfaction. Eurofound publication alert and Fourth European Working Conditions Surveys (2005)
Working flat out and feeling fed up Millions of UK workers are likely to be suffering from depression and panic attacks because they are so stressed out by their jobs. This is one of the key findings of the latest 24-7 survey - a national research project conducted by the Work Life Balance Centre and the universities of Keele, Coventry and Wolverhampton. Work Life Balance Centre news release [pdf] and full 24-7 survey report
Europe's hours A new report from Eurofound looks at the issue of extended and unusual working hours, by exploring all aspects of non-standard working hours, including the extension of working hours through overtime, working at unusual times and varied time schedules over the week, month or year involving changing working hours. The report examines in greater detail the incidence and effects of such working hours across countries, sectors and companies. Extended and unusual working hours in European companies • [pdf]
Equal Opportunities Commission Consultation response: EU Consultation on the Working Time Directive [pdf]
ESRC - Diet of long hours is worse for women Employers must address the problems posed to women by long hours or risk driving them into an unhealthy lifestyle, according to new research ESRC news release • WebMD
Joseph Rowntree Foundation The influence of atypical working hours on family life - Men's long working hours damage family life
Commuting time equals four working weeks The average commuter spends about four working weeks each year trekking between work and home. BBC News Online
Commute times starting to decline The number of people spending more than one hour per day commuting to work fell by 206,000 in 2007, according to TUC. The TUC analysis of official Labour Force Survey (LFS) figures - produced to coincide with Workwise UK's Commute Smart week, the last week in October - shows a fall of one per cent from 2006 in employees undertaking commuter journeys of longer than one hour.Work Wise UK news release and Commute Smart Week webpages • TUC news release.
EIRO - Europe's hours A European Industrial Relations Observatory (EIRO) review of the length of working time in 2004 and 2005 has found average collectively agreed weekly working time in the European Union as a whole remained at around 38.6 hours. Working time developments - 2005, EIRO report, 2006
Depressing burnout Workers with high levels of job strain are at a massively increased risk of burnout, a study of Finnish workers has found. Researchers also found that job burnout was the most significant risk factor for depression among the study participants. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine [abstract].
Institute for Employment Studies Breaking the Long Hours Culture
Unpublished EU report exposes working time abuse in UK An unpublished European Union research report exposes widespread abuse of the Working Time Directive in the UK. The UK is the only EU country that allows everyone at work to sign away their right to work no more than an average 48-hour average working week. more
European Trade Union Confederatoin (ETUC) Modern organisation of working time and the fundamental right to limitation of working hours
Unite - Amicus section Working time, rest & holidays links and resources page
RMT Working time Your questions answered
Drop dead Hazards guide to death and burn-out from working long hours, including work-related suicide.
Get a life! Hazards guide to overwork featuring news, resources and further links
Karoshi time Relatives of victims of karoshi - death from overwork - have held rallies in Tokyo to protest at Japan's long working hours, which top 2,000 hours a year. Japan's parliament is discussing legislation to limit excessive overtime, but has angered unions and campaigners by suggesting white collar workers should be exempted from its provisions. Japan Times
Canada: One-third admit they are 'workaholics' Nearly one-third of Canadians describe themselves as 'workaholics,' according to a new Statistics Canada (Statscan) report. Statscan news release • Global and Mail
Globally, one in five work 'excessive' hours Nearly a century after adopting
its first international standard on working time, a new study by the International
Labour Office (ILO) estimates that one in five workers around the world - or
over 600 million people - are still working more than 48 hours a week.
ILO news release • Working time around the world: Trends in working hours, laws, and policies in a global comparative perspective by Sangheon Lee, Deirdre McCann and Jon C Messenger, ISBN 978-92-2-119311-1, ILO, Geneva, from ILO Publications • Report summary [pdf]
Blood boiling Workers who clocked more than 51 hours at the office each week were 29 per cent more likely to have high blood pressure than those who worked 39 hours or less, a US study has found. Haiou Yang, Peter L Schnall and others. Work hours and self-reported hypertension among working people in California, Hypertension, published online 28 August 2006 [abstract].
Take back your time day is a major U.S./Canadian initiative to challenge the epidemic of overwork, over-scheduling and time famine. Take back your time day is October 24 Campaign pages
Crash course Grossly excessive work shifts could leave workers at twice the risk of a car crash, US government-backed research has shown. NIOSH news release Laura K Barger and others. Extended work shifts and the risk of motor vehicle crashes among interns , NEJM, volume 352, number 2, pages 125-134, 13 January 2005.
Cocktail effect A study has shown how important the reduction of junior doctors' hours has been, equating the effect of long shifts to drinking a few cocktails. US researchers writing in the Journal of the American Medical Association found 90-hour weeks impaired performance in the same way as knocking back three shorts. JAMA abstract BBC News Online
USA: Work to live vacation campaign
The Work to Live Campaign was created to do just that, to bring some sanity to a workplace out of control. The goal is to amend the US labor laws so that work practices reflect who we are?parents, citizens, and members of communities. You can't be those things with a 60-hour week and a one-week vacation. Work to live
Shift cancers The 24-hour economy is placing women at an increased risk of breast cancer. Researchers from Harvard University have established that regular night shifts increase the chance of developing the disease by as much as 50 per cent. New Zealand Herald .
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