Britain's long hours culture is continuing, with workers putting in the longest hours in the EU, a new study suggests.
Full-time employees in this country worked an average of 42 hours a week last year, almost two more than the typical EU employee, said the TUC.
Workers in other countries, including Germany and Denmark, are more productive than their UK counterparts even though they work fewer hours, said the TUC.
The average full-time week in Britain has shortened by 18 minutes over the past decade, and at the current rate of progress, it would take 63 years for workers to get the same amount of free time as elsewhere in the EU, said the union organisation.
TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: “Britain's long hours culture is nothing to be proud of.
“It's robbing workers of a decent home life and time with their loved ones. Overwork, stress and exhaustion have become the new normal.
“Other countries have shown that reducing working hours isn't only good for workers, it can boost productivity.
“As new technology changes our economy, the benefits should be shared by working people. That means shorter hours, more time with family and friends, and decent pay for everyone.”
The UK's 42-hour week compares with 37 in Denmark and 39 in countries such as Holland, Italy, Belgium, France, Sweden and Ireland, according to the study.
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