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Four-day working week. Minister Agnieszka Dziemianowicz-Bąk at Impact'24 about shortening the working week

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Four days – this is how long a working week should last, according to Minister Agnieszka Dziemianowicz-Bąk, in the perspective of “the next few years”. At the Impact '24 congress, she emphasized that these are social expectations. Such a change to the Labor Code is also expected to be supported by the “relatively good economic situation and low unemployment.”

– I believe that it is time to shorten the working week to four days in the next few years – said Agnieszka Dziemianowicz-Bąk, Minister of Labor, Family and Social Policy, on Thursday at the Impact '24 congress in Poznań.

When will there be a 4-day working week in Poland?

Poles work on average 40.4 hours a week – three hours longer than the average in EU countries and 8 hours longer than the shortest-working Dutch. Only Greeks work longer than Poles, 41 hours a week. These are the data described in the publication of the Polish Economic Institute “Work-life balance and flexible forms of work organization”.

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– In a relatively good economic situation, with low unemployment and with social expectations expressed primarily by young people, the demand for time for life, time for development, time for family is a demand that must be taken seriously. At the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, we take it seriously and I believe that now is the time to actually shorten the working week to four days in the perspective of perhaps not a month, perhaps not a year, but the next few years, she announced.

The head of the Ministry of Labor, Family and Social Policy also drew attention to the generational conflict between today's 40- or 60-year-olds and people in their 20s and 30s. – The young generation, unlike my generation and my parents' generation, does not treat work as a basic area of ​​life, but as one of the important parts of life. A part that must, however, be reconciled with family life, with self-development, with passion, with other fascinations – she emphasized.

– In my opinion, the young generation is right in this respect and this young generation is the generator of change for which we must prepare by organizing the labor market, organizing employment policy, organizing social policy – she noted.

In mid-March, the Minister of Family, Labor and Social Policy Agnieszka Dziemianowicz-Bąk announced that she had commissioned the Central Institute for Labor Protection to analyze work efficiency in relation to the number of hours worked by the employee per week. “I would like the working week to be shortened this term,” said the minister.

Experiments with a shorter working week

Calls for a shorter work week have intensified in recent years as millions of workers switched to work during the pandemic remote work and stopped commuting to work, saving time and money.

A number of experiments with a four-day week have been carried out around the world. In 2022, a similar trial was completed USA with 33 companies employing 903 employees. At the time, none of the 27 companies participating in a survey conducted by 4 Day Week Global said they were inclined to return to a five-day workweek.

About 97 percent of the 495 workers who responded to voluntary surveys said they wanted the four-day workweek to remain.

Main photo source: Shutterstock

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