28 April 2009
BECTU has criticised the stalemate in Europe which has led to no change in policy on the maximum working week.
Commenting on today's announcement, general secretary, Gerry Morrissey said:
Politicians say that the opt-out gives people choice when, in the industries we look after, the reverse is true.
"Our members have long looked forward to a positive decision in Europe which would overrule the UK's continued opt-out from the maximum 48-hour week.
"Politicians say that the opt-out gives people choice when, in the industries we look after, the reverse is true.
"Some of our members, particularly in film-making and television production, are forced to accept working arrangements in excess of 60 hours a week. If they don't accept the terms, they don't get the work.
"The policy makers also appear to have forgotten that the Working Time Directive is a health and safety measure. Excessive hours cost lives and damage health.
"This news, which comes on Workers' Memorial Day, only entrenches poor systems of work and limits the opportunity for more people to enter the sector by denying workers real choice over their working hours."