Media staff are working almost a day each week in unpaid overtime

By Jon Slattery

Journalists
and other media employees do almost an extra day of work each week in
unpaid overtime, according to a new TUC “long hours league table”.

The
table is published to coincide with today’s (25 February) “Work Your
Proper Hours Day” – when the TUC says bosses should take staff out to
say thank-you for all their extra hours.

Unpaid overtime among
“media associate professionals”, the official occupational group that
includes journalists and broadcasters, runs at six hours 24 minutes a
week. The TUC claims the unpaid overtime represents £5,000 a year per
employee.

The TUC has chosen today as “Work Your Proper Hours Day”

because,
if the average person who does unpaid overtime did all their unsalaried
work at the start of the year, they would not begin to get paid until
25 February.

The TUC is urging people who work in the media to
mark the day by working their official hours – by starting and leaving
on time and taking a proper lunch break.

It says managers should
use the day to say a proper thankyou to staff for all their unpaid
extra work and take them out for a coffee or cocktail.

TUC
general secretary Brendan Barber said: “Many of Britain’s broadcasting
outlets would collapse without all the extra hours put in by their
staff.

“Few mind putting in extra time when there’s a deadline or
an emergency, but too often this gets taken for granted and built in to
the expected working week. Even those who enjoy their jobs the most
still need proper time off to recharge their batteries and have a life.

“Work
Your Proper Hours Day is a once a year opportunity for bosses to say
thank-you to their staff for their extra work, and for employees to
remind themselves just how much extra time they would have if they did
go home on time every day.”

At www.workyourproperhoursday.com employees can arrange for a “Boss-agram”


an anonymous email, to be sent to their employer, reminding them how
much they depend on their staff’s loyalty and extra work They can also
check out how much their own unpaid overtime is worth and see where
their hours come in the unpaid overtime league table the TUC has
derived from official statistics.

The chart is topped by teachers, who work an average 11 hours 36 minutes overtime each week.

Media professionals come 30th in the league.

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