Working Time Directive

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by dUnKle, Aug 30, 2007.

  1. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    7 years or so ago I began a job which meant I worked shifts - shifta pattern was based over working earlies, lates and nights over a 7 day period

    Couple of years back our pattern was slightly modified due to the Working Time Directive, which as I understood it was about to be introduced

    Part of the "new" rules I was led to belive involved

    (a) A night worker not working more than X amount of hours over X amount of weeks
    (b) A limit (believe 9) on the amount of hours a night worker should work
    and (c) A break of at least 11 hours between shifts

    Now my shift pattern is fine for this - the Union (unison) got involved and where happy with it

    However my other half also works shifts, she works in a home looking after kids with severe disabilities and quite often she

    (a) Finishes work at 2200hrs to have to be there again at 0700hrs next morning
    (b) Starts around 1630hrs - HAS to sleep on site and then be up again at 0700hrs to work - quite often she ends up having to help if woken at night

    She also has same union but nobody seems aware of the WTD

    Was it just a line we where sold ? Did it ever come into effect ? Does it effect her ?
     
  2. John

    John
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  3. Miniholic

    Miniholic
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    Does your wife work for local government or private sector? I'm guessing LG if shes in Unison.

    I know we follow these rules for manual workers, but I'm not sure about care staff, as I look after the Social Work side. I've got some details in the office though. I'll let you know tomorrow if nobody else posts beforehand.

    EDIT: Ok, someone has. :)
     
  4. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    Cheers

    She used to work for the RNIB before the place was taken over by the parents of the kids (RNIB closed down a lot of there homes)

    I assume its either

    (a) Not applicable to her role or
    (b) Nobody knows about it
     
  5. williemaykit

    williemaykit
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    The working time regulations are generally taken as an average over a period of time. For example, if you were being asked to forgo your 11 hours rest once a year, then this generally does not constitute a violation of the regulations.

    Unless your wife has opted out of it (i.e. physically signed to waiver her rights under the WTR), then I would have her talk to her employer/union rep first.

    It does sound strange that no one in her organisation has heard of it.

    Also have a look at ACAS which alot of organisations tend to align themselves with

    http://www.acas.org.uk/

    particuarly this page

    http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=1135 its an FAQ on the WTR
     
  6. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    Now thats what I am still confused over

    We used to do a thing called "quick change" which as with my partner meant finishing at 2200hrs and returning at 0600hrs

    The shift patterns where changed because of the WTD as we where told that we HAD to have a period of 11 hours before shifts

    However reading the WTD its not clear - it could also mean that in a period of 24 hours you can not work more than 13
     
  7. williemaykit

    williemaykit
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    To be honest, I would seek clarification from your union. :)
     
  8. lynx

    lynx
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    Have her contact her branch office and to speak with the branch secretary, who can give advice and comment on why apparently no local steward is aware of WTD regs.The stewards should be up to date and trained on this, if they are new and inexperienced they should call in a more experienced branch officer.
    She can also call UNISONdirect 0845 355 0845.
     
  9. Dave

    Dave
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    As I understand it the WTD simply means an employer cannot force an employee to work more than is laid down in the WTD.

    If said employee wants to work more hours then it's up to them.
     
  10. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    Cheers mate - will do
     
  11. Synchro

    Synchro
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    I wish it was easy to apply to offshore workers. Companies always seem to find a loophole :(
     
  12. mr ooops

    mr ooops

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    did she ever "opt out" we were given sheets to sign, saying we didnt want to be included in the W T D , and we would give x amount of weeks notice to "opt in" again. ?

    needless to say i told the company to shove there paper up the rear ends!!

    and over a period of time, w t d is slowy being "forgotten" about by more and more companys
     
  13. SeanT

    SeanT
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    You can ONLY opt out of the 48 hour maximum working week (averaged over 13 weeks) provision - you can't opt out of any of the other provisions of the WTR, however there are exceptions and there can be collective agreements - but if you don't know what a collective agreement is and haven't been asked to sign one (and had it explained to you) then there isn't one.
    It's an absolute minefield and employers seem to either ignore it completely (eg. those who outsource their HR and are covered against any action anyway) or take it extremely seriously, be absolutely petrified of it, and thus get it all wrong anyway, leaving workers short of cash and them short on staffing - it's due to be ratified as it's a joke.
    The regulations are more complicated if someone is required to sleep on site etc.
     
  14. dUnKle

    dUnKle
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    cheers all

    at least know not making it up

    always seemed a bit "dangerous" that she was expected to return to work on around 6 hours sleep to do the job she does
     

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