The debate over the four-day work week is becoming more and more powerful, so it was only a matter of time before it became a first-rate electoral weapon. More Country has already brought the proposal in his 2019 general election program, although at that time the subject was hardly discussed. Now, the coalition of left-wing parties Por Andalucía has introduced it among its electoral promises for the autonomous communities of that autonomous community, an action that will have important repercussions for this labor model.
The Andalusian proposal. For Andalusia, he has promised that, if they reach the Board, they will investigate the possibilities and convenience of implementing a four-day work week in the autonomous community. Something similar to what Valencia already did before launching its pilot program, although in the case of the Valencians it was not an electoral promise, but a project promoted by the institutions when Compromís was already in the Generalitat.
The study of the feasibility of the four-day working week in Andalusia is included in the ‘Work to live’ plan of the political formation, which has different initiatives aimed at guaranteeing work-life balance, according to Europa Press. At the moment, that is all the information that Andalusia has shared in this regard.
repercussions. Although it is a timid proposal, a “we will study the possibility of”, the truth is that the use of the four-day working week as an electoral weapon represents a further step in the debate on the labor model. If its introduction in the Más País program for the 2019 general elections caused people to start talking about it, Por Andalucía is the starting point for us to see the proposal among the promises of more left-wing parties in upcoming regional elections and nationals.
This implies that the four-day work week, or at least the study of its viability, will gradually begin to become institutionalized, depending on the strength obtained by the parties that incorporate it in the elections.
More Country, for example, managed to get the Government of Spain to introduce an item of 10 million euros in the General State Budgets to test it, although its initial intention was for it to be 50 million and in its program it promised to promote legislative changes to reduce the working week to 32 hours. This is due to the fact that the Íñigo Errejón formation only has three deputies and its weight in the current national Executive is quite modest.
Compromís, on the other hand, has achieved that the pilot project of the Valencian Community has the same budget allocation for three provinces as the central government has for all of Spain, 10 million euros, because the training directed by Mónica Oltra is key in the Executive by Ximo Puig. Compromís won 17 seats in the last regional elections and is a member of the PSOE government with four councillors.
what is to come. Whatever happens to Por Andalucía, what is clear is that it will not be the only or the last political formation to use the four-day working week as an electoral promise. It is normal, it is a proposal of growing interest among workers and that can be very attractive to an electorate that is paying more and more attention to work-life balance and mental health.
Another thing is that the model is going to be consolidated or that it works, for that we will have to wait for the different electoral results, the parliamentary initiatives and the conclusions of the reports and the pilot projects that are developed in this regard.
The model. The four-day work week is a model of work reorganization that proposes reducing the working day from 40 to 32 hours per week without this implying a reduction in salary. The defenders of this proposal argue that working less makes professionals more rested and happy, which causes their productivity to increase and, in the long run, they are able to perform the same in less time.
However, the model raises many questions among some entrepreneurs, who do not believe that the same can be produced in less time. For this reason, alternative proposals have emerged, such as those of Telefónica and Desigual, which proposed working one day less by reducing part of the employees’ salaries, or that of the Government of Belgium, which proposed maintaining the 40-hour workday per week at the rate of 10 hours a day from Monday to Thursday.
And those are not the only doubts. Despite the advantages that advocates of the four-day workweek for the well-being of workers proclaim, recent studies indicate that it can mean more stress and pressure for professionals by having to do the same job in less time. Likewise, the model also raises questions about inequality between workers in different sectors, since experts assure that this reduction to 32 hours of work per week cannot be extended to all types of jobs.
Image | Through Andalusia