Protect Employee Health With Four-Day Workweek

Target: Marty Walsh, Secretary of U.S. Department of Labor

Goal: Advocate four-day work week to address employee satisfaction and worker shortages.

The Great Resignation has led to millions of workers quitting their jobs in America and around the world. Individuals often cite job dissatisfaction and work/life balance as major drivers of their decisions. Women (and mothers) in particular have faced tremendous challenges in juggling their employment demands with the demands of family life. To address labor shortages, employers have increasingly turned to new methods of attracting qualified talent. One of these measures is quickly gaining traction: the four-day work week.

Under this model, employees in a typical five-day work cycle would get one extra day off a week…usually Fridays. The employees do not suffer any reduction in their salaries or benefits as a result. The philosophy behind this movement is that relieving the workload and stress on employees (and giving them more time to devote to themselves and families) will make them more productive and competent in their job duties. Real-world case studies of companies that have employed this strategy seem to bear the theory out. Workers report being strongly enticed by this perk and experiencing much higher job satisfaction once they make the transition. They also find themselves being able to complete equal—and often more—work in four days as they did in five previously.

California recently introduced an effort to make 32-hour work weeks the standard in that state. Sign the petition below to urge the nation’s labor department to advocate for a nationwide rollout of this effort.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Secretary Walsh,

Employers are scrambling to curb the impact of the Great Resignation, or the Big Quit. The companies most successful at stemming this tide are the ones listening to employees and their reasons for seeking more satisfying work opportunities. Studies—as well as real-world anecdotes—time and again point to increased rates of depression, anxiety, and physical stress-compounded ailments afflicting large segments of the working population. In short, these individuals are feeling over-worked and underappreciated…and their health is suffering as a result.

Several North American companies are currently participating in a pilot study regarding a four-day work week. If the results of this study mirror other such initiatives, these companies will report a happier, healthier, and exponentially more productive workforce. Mothers, and women in general, will reap some of the biggest benefits in striking that crucial work and life balance.

Please follow this study closely, as well as legislative efforts in California and other regions to put a 32-hour work week into general practice. The five-day work week was once just an idea too, until visionary leaders helped make it a widespread reality. If you see the great potential of this movement for the labor industry, the health industry, and even the environment, please support this initiative at the national level.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Fauxels


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