British workers are the most overworked
and stressed workers in Europe. Nearly 4 million employees (16%)
are now working more than 48 hours a week - 350,000 more than in 1992 -
according to a TUC
People are dying at work and are unable to spend much time with their families. Trade Unions have been calling for a limit to the maximum working week.
After due consultation the European Union (EU) issued a Directive saying that the maximum working week should be 48 hours per week (with exceptions for some workers). The UK government is being urged to adopt the Directive
The UK tops the European long hours league, and is the only country that allows staff to opt out of the 48 hour limit. The average working week is 43.6 hours in the UK compared to an EU average of 40.3 hours. Many European countries, including those more productive than the UK, have tougher limits on hours. Austria, Finland, Norway, Portugal, Belgium, Spain and Sweden all have 39 or 40 hour limits, and France has a 35 hour week.
ACCA, supposedly a professional accountancy body, opposes the adoption of the EU Directive by the UK (click here). Will it ever be satisfied until workers start dying of exhaustion and stress? If employers can't treat people humanely and pay them a decent wage, they should not be in business. Slavery is supposed to be abolished. All human beings deserve a decent wage and working hours that do not destroy their family life.
Previously, ACCA opposed the UK laws on minimum wage. This ACCA policy will be about as successful as the ACCA campaign against minimum wage.
ACCA members have to ask whether they pay their subscriptions so that the ACCA's unaccountable management can campaign against minimum wage and decent working conditions for workers. Or do they pay their subscriptions to have decent accountancy related services. ACCA hardly provides much of a service to its members. There is no internet chat room, library, uncensored magazine, analysis of the membership, one-person one-vote or anything else.
ACCA has not consulted its members in devising
its policies. Whilst the ACCA management will disappear with fat salaries,
bonuses and pensions, it is ACCA members who will remain associated with
the anti-social policies.