Opt out still in
A deadline to scrap the opt-out, is unlikely to be imposed in the near future, with EU Parliament expressing concerns that the employees could be working for up to 65 hours a week. Now EU members for whom this is an issue look set to adopt the British opt-out, which allows workers to work more than 48 hours a week.
Businesses in the UK have been pushing for the opt-out to remain in place, on the basis that to adopt new regulations could affect productivity, competitiveness and the ability to trade out of recession. The EU Parliament is considering taking the issue to court over concerns that UK workers could be exploited by some employers, and although the current European Commission is disbanding after this summer, the new regime is not likely to let the issue drop.
The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has today welcomed the Government’s hard fought victory in the battle to see off European Parliament proposals to remove the individual opt-out from the Working Time Directive. Mike Emmott, Employee Relations Adviser at the CIPD, says: “The British Government and its allies are to be congratulated for seeing off attempts to remove the opt-out from the Working Time Directive.
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