IS THE FOUR-DAY WEEK FOR YOU?

EXPERIENCES IN DIFFERENT CITIES WITH THE FOUR-DAY, FOURTY-HOUR WORK WEEK (FOUR-FORTY) ARE REPORTED. IT HAS BEEN TRIED IN AT LEAST 100 MUNICIPALITIES AND SOME 4000 COMPANIES. AN IMPEDIMENT TO THE ADOPTION OF THE FOUR-DAY WEEK BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT IS EXISTING LEGISLATION WHICH GUARANTEES FEDERAL WORKERS OVERTIME PAY AFTER EIGHT HOURS IN ONE DAY. A VARIATION OF THE CONCEPT IS DESCRIBED IN WHICH THE ONLY REQUIREMENT IS THAT WORKERS SHOULD PUT IN 80 HOURS DURING ANY GIVEN 2-WEEK PERIOD. THE FOUR-FORTY HAS WON THE OVERWHELMING SUPPORT OF CITY EMPLOYEES IN ATLANTA. A SUBURB IN MINNEAPOLIS USHERED IN A MANDATORY PLAN, SUPPORT FOR WHICH CRUMBLED WHEN IT WAS MADE VOLUNTARY. SEVENTY FIVE POLICE DEPARTMENTS HAVE TRIED THE FOUR-DAY WORK WEEK WITH MIXED RESULTS. THE PLAN WHICH WAS ADOPTED IN ONE DISTRICT IN WASHINGTON, D. C. HAS NOW BEEN DROPPED. IN HUNTINGTON, BEACH, CALIFORNIA, HOWEVER, THE COMMUNITY FOUND A 15 PERCENT CUT IN RESPONSE TIME ON EMERGENCY CALLS, AND FELONY ARRESTS INCREASED BY 126 PERCENT. SICK LEAVE AND OVERTIME WAS REDUCED BY 10 PERCENT. A SURVEY BY THE AMERICAN MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION (AMA) REVEALED THAT BUSINESSMEN DO NOT FAVOR THE NEW PLAN. THIRTY EIGHT PERCENT OF COMPANIES OPERATING THE FOUR-FORTY, REPORT DECREASES IN OPERATING COSTS, WHILE 11 PERCENT FEEL IT HAS BOOSTED THEIR COSTS. PRODUCTION HAS INCREASED IN 62 PERCENT OF THESE FIRMS AND EFFICIENCY HAS IMPROVED IN 66 PERCENT OF THEM. ORGANIZED LABOR IS NOT KNOWN TO GIVE INNOVATION THEIR WHOLEHEARTED SUPPORT. AN AFL-CIO ECONOMIST HAS TERMED IT AN "EMPLOYER PLOY". IT MIGHT MEAN, AMONG OTHER THINGS, FORFEITURE OF OVERTIME PAY. ON THE OTHER HAND, IT MIGHT PROVE TO BE A STEP TOWARD THE 32-HOUR WEEK FOR WHICH LABOR HAS BEEN FIGHTING. RECOMMENDATIONS BY THE URBAN INSTITUTE OF WASHINGTON, D. C. ARE OUTLINED. A 6-MONTH TRIAL IN ATLANTA WAS STUDIED AND RECOMMENDATIONS WERE MADE. BENEFICIAL EFFECTS OF THE 4-DAY WEEK ARE REVIEWED.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Nations Business

    ,    
  • Publication Date: 1974-1

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 49-51
  • Serial:
    • Volume: 62
    • Issue Number: 1

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00200797
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 19 1974 12:00AM