labour law

(redirected from 40-hour working week)
Also found in: Dictionary.

labour law

the body of legislation and judicial decisions concerned with INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS, TRADE UNIONS and employment. Labour law has two main forms:
  1. individual labour law, relating to the rights and obligations of individual employees.

    From the 1960s onwards the volume of law in this area has grown considerably, partly as a response to European Union legislation. The Employment Act 1975 was particularly important as it established the right not to be unfairly dismissed (see UNFAIR DISMISSAL). Other important legislation in this era proscribed DISCRIMINATION on grounds of race or sex. In the 1980s individual rights were weakened somewhat. For example, the qualifying period for the right not to be unfairly dismissed was extended. However, legislation by the European Union counterbalanced this trend to some extent, and in the 1990s employees' rights in the areas of dismissal, MATERNITY RIGHTS, PARENTAL LEAVE and WORKING TIME were widened and strengthened;

  2. collective labour laws, relating to the activities of TRADE UNIONS and the conduct of INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS and COLLECTIVE BARGAINING. Traditionally, the law has not played an important role in industrial relations, and agreements made between unions and employers are not legally binding (see VOLUNTARISM). However, industrial relations has become increasingly subject to legal intervention in recent years (see JURIDIFICATION). In the 1970s a statutory union recognition procedure was established (subsequently repealed) by the Employment Act 1975. This law also required that employers consult over REDUNDANCIES and pass to unions information relevant to collective bargaining (see DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION). In the 1980s and 1990s the conduct of STRIKES, TRADE UNION IMMUNITIES, SECONDARY ACTION, and the CLOSED SHOP were all the subjects of legislation, much of it aimed at eradicating what the government saw as trade union abuses. Recently a new STATUTORY UNION RECOGNITION PROCEDURE was introduced. Whilst union action continues to be highly regulated, labour law is now seen to be less hostile to unions than it was in the 1980s and 1990s. See MINIMUM WAGE.
References in periodicals archive ?
If they complete a 40-hour working week, possibly some overtime, and have to comply with two hours weekly training, it leaves them little time for fire fighting duties before they hit the 48 hour limit.
The 40-hour working week is tending to become the legal norm but, in fact, 22% of workers around the world are working more than 48 hours per week, according to a study by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
They are frequently made to work beyond the legally permitted 36 hours of overtime a month on top of their normal 40-hour working week.
Countering that, if replacements cannot be found within Europe, it may require a change in arrangements within stables by which those who ride work do only that, freeing the yard jobs for those who don't, and a more open-minded approach to considering allowing staff more weekend time off within their 40-hour working week.
Based on a standard 40-hour working week, this amounted to PS5.
Runcorn-born Ben, 20, averaged a 40-hour working week while studying full time at catering college, in order to equip himself with the skills and experience necessary to pursue his passion for the culinary arts.
ATHLETE Susan Scott is juggling training for the Commonwealth Games with a 40-hour working week helping the sick.
Passed recently by the European Parliament's Committee on Employment and Social Affairs, the report calls for the employment guidelines to be sharpened and for a maximum 40-hour working week (target to be hit over a five-year period).
The top 1% of earners pocket a minimum of PS123,400 a year - about PS60 an hour - for a standard 40-hour working week, the Resolution Foundation think tank found.
But road safety groups yesterday reacted with anger to the decision not to ban Collymore - who could pay off his fine in less than one hour, based on a 40-hour working week