A US Congressman Introduced Legislation For A 4-Day Workweek & This Is Why

It would reduce the standard workweek from 40 hours to 32 hours.

US Congressman Introduced Legislation For A 4-Day Workweek & Here's Why
Senior Editor

A U.S. democratic congressman has introduced legislation that would make four-day workweeks the norm and reduce the traditional working week from 40 hours to 32 hours.

In a press release issued on July 27, Congressman Mark Takano laid out the reasons for the proposed legislation, arguing that the change would "benefit both employers and employees alike."

"I am introducing this legislation to reduce the standard workweek to 32 hours because — now more than ever — people continue to work longer hours while their pay remains stagnant," he said. "We cannot continue to accept this as our reality."

Drawing on successful pilot programs across the globe, Takano said there had been "promising results, as productivity climbed and workers reported better work-life balance, less need to take sick days, heightened morale and lower childcare expenses because they had more time with their family and children."

He added that shorter workweeks have been shown to reduce healthcare premiums for employers, in addition to lowering operating costs and having a positive environmental impact.

The proposal would allow all eligible employees to receive overtime compensation for any time worked over 32 hours, allowing more people to access additional pay.

Will it pass?

California's proposed legislation must be reviewed by a committee, receive a majority vote in the House of Representatives and get approval from the Senate before it could pass. It remains to be seen what will happen next.

Elsewhere in the world, four-day workweeks have been taking off. In Iceland, the concept was tested and deemed an "overwhelming success," while in places like Spain and Canada trials continue.

Helena Hanson
Senior Editor
Helena Hanson is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media, leading the Travel and Money teams. She previously lived in Ottawa, but is now based in the U.K.