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Should working days be allowed to last ten hours?

Of course it sounds paradoxical at first: working days of ten, eleven, twelve hours and more should contribute to a better compatibility of family and work - and at the same time increase the employment rate.

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Should working days be allowed to last ten hours?

Of course it sounds paradoxical at first: working days of ten, eleven, twelve hours and more should contribute to a better compatibility of family and work - and at the same time increase the employment rate. At least that is the argument of the Bavarian Minister of Labor and Social Affairs, who wants to increase the maximum working time.

Does that really have the desired effect? The fact is: It takes more flexibility at work to reconcile family and career. This also includes variable working hours.

One solution can therefore definitely be to be able to bundle the work into three or four long days. Because then with a 40-hour week, according to Adam Riese, there would be a day off or a long weekend with the family. If this calculation works out and it doesn't end up in a horse-trading where employees simply work more legally, the law should actually bring more flexibility for some parents. That would be welcome and at least a lever for more family friendliness.

The author prefers to write her texts at night.

A better work-life balance is needed – politicians have been rattling on about this for years. Who would disagree? Of course, more needs to happen to support mothers in particular. Getting more women into work could add around a million workers.

But it is doubtful that working days of up to twelve hours will really bring about a turning point. Instead, companies in particular must guarantee better career opportunities for mothers and women who are planning children.

A higher employment rate could also be achieved if politicians could finally show some success with the miserable staffing situation in day-care centers and schools. Flexibility can make more sense for individual professions, such as classic office jobs. But apart from the fact that productivity suffers with such long days, most of the country does not work in an office. Occupational health and safety does not exist without a reason. In many cases, a softening is more likely to open the door to more work overall.

The author sees himself as a feminist.

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