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Scotland To Trial A Four-Day Week Without Loss Of Pay

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Scotland To Trial A Four-Day Week Without Loss Of Pay

Over the last few months, multiple countries including Spain and Iceland have been dabbling with the idea of four day working weeks and Scotland will be the latest to try it out.

A report, released today, includes some ideas of how it could be done after an overwhelming amount of people said they think they'd prefer to have a four-day week (and a three-day weekend).

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Research for the think tank Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) Scotland found that 80 percent of people believed that cutting their number of days at work - with no loss of pay - would have a 'positive effect on their wellbeing'.

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On top of this, the survey also found that 88 percent would be willing to take part in trial schemes being set up by ministers at Holyrood.

Pilots are being staged in the wake of changes in working practices brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, with the SNP having pledged a £10 million fund for companies trialling a four-day week.

A Scottish Government spokesman said: "The pandemic has served to intensify interest in and support for more flexible working practices, which could include a shift to a four-day working week.

"Reductions in the working week might help sustain more and better jobs, and enhance wellbeing.

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"We are in the early stages of designing a £10 million pilot that will help companies explore the benefits and costs of moving to a four-day working week. The pilot will allow us to develop a better understanding of the implications of a broader shift to a shorter working week across the economy."

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Rachel Statham, senior research fellow at IPPR Scotland, said: "The Scottish Government is right to be trialling a four-day working week because today's evidence shows that it is a policy with overwhelming public support, and could be a positive step towards building an economy hardwired for wellbeing.

"But any successful transition post-Covid-19 must include all kinds of workplaces, and all types of work. The full-time, nine-to-five office job is not how many people across Scotland work - and shorter working time trials need to reflect that reality.

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"So we must examine what shorter working time looks like from the perspective of shift workers, those working excessive hours to make ends meet, or those who currently have fewer hours than they would like to have."

The poll - for which about 2,203 people aged between 16 and 65 were questioned - also found that almost two-thirds (65 percent) believe a shorter working week could boost Scotland's productivity.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: News, Community, UK, Scotland

Rebecca Shepherd
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