A 4-Day Work Week Bill Is Being Reintroduced in the House as Idea Gains Speed

Rep. Mark Takano is reintroducing a invoice that will hack eight hours off of the usual work week.

Rep. Mark Takano is planning to introduce a proposal that will shorten the usual work week within the U.S. to 4 days as the concept positive factors traction in Washington.

Takano, a Democrat from California, is planning to reintroduce a bill that will amend the Truthful Labor Requirements Act to ascertain a normal work week that’s 32 hours quite than 40, amounting to 4 eight-hour workdays. Hours labored previous that interval, until in any other case specified, can be topic to increased compensation.

Per Semafor, Takano says the invoice would assist transfer American work requirements into the long run as increasingly employers undertake a shorter work week or are working towards the purpose.

“We’ve earlier than us the chance to make frequent sense modifications to work requirements handed down from a unique period,” Takano stated in an announcement. The proposal would “enhance the standard of lifetime of staff, assembly the demand for a extra truncated workweek that enables room to reside, play, and luxuriate in life extra absolutely exterior of labor,” Takano continued.

The concept of a shorter work week has gained steam after a recent four-day work week pilot run by advocacy group 4 Day Week World reported nice success final month, with a lot of the 61 firm members saying they had been planning to maintain the shorter work week mannequin sooner or later. The staff, whose pay was saved the identical all through the trial, reported advantages to their psychological and bodily well being, and resignations went down throughout the 6-month trial interval.

Takano’s invoice has been endorsed by main labor unions like AFL-CIO, United Meals and Industrial Staff and Service Staff Worldwide Union, in addition to the Congressional Progressive Caucus, which is made up of over 100 members of Congress. Takano first introduced a model of the invoice in 2021, with the assist of teams just like the Financial Coverage Institute.

The lawmaker has stated that the invoice ought to be paired with a rise to the minimal wage and stronger employee protections with the intention to be sure that hourly staff may nonetheless make a habitable wage with the shorter week.

“This a lot stronger connection to human mortality has made individuals worth their time,” Takano stated in an interview in January 2022, talking in regards to the “Nice Resignation” labor motion spurred by the pandemic. “I believe there was a Nice Realization amongst lots of Individuals — how arduous they’re working and that they wished to maneuver on from the roles that they had been working at. So a four-day work week is one thing that connects lots of Individuals.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) has voiced assist for the concept. The senator stated final week that technological developments have allowed firms to be way more productive — however at the moment, company executives and main shareholders are the one ones reaping materials advantages, with staff’ wages staying comparatively stagnant even if it’s their work that’s boosting income.

“With exploding know-how and elevated employee productiveness, it’s time to maneuver towards a four-day work week with no lack of pay,” Sanders stated. “Staff should profit from know-how, not simply company CEOs.”

There’s historic precedent for shortening the usual work week — which, in fact, isn’t the universal experience of all staff, partially as a consequence of declining work requirements and wages. Within the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, labor unions labored to stress lawmakers into shortening the work day to eight hours and the work week to 5 days, after staff had beforehand been pressured to work grueling hours and six- or seven-day weeks as a normal full-time job.

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