China Employment Rules Should Allow ‘Offline Rest’ For Workers



Policy advisors and legislators at the ongoing “two sessions” in China are advocating for stronger protection against invisible overtime to benefit workers.

Lyu Guoquan, the director of the general office of China’s labour union federation and a delegate to the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, expressed this sentiment. He has suggested strengthening the legal consequences for businesses engaging in “invisible overtime practices” and adding the right to “offline rest” to labour rules.

“The internet era’s digital information technology has blurred the ‘boundaries’ between work and life, normalising invisible overtime as ‘unpaid overtime,'” according to Lyu.
“Workers have become “locked in the work system” as a result of being “always online,” which has a negative impact on their physical and emotional health.”

Related link: Employee In Beijing Compensated For “Invisible Overtime”

Lyu has proposed changing the regular work schedule to make online overtime and pay more explicit. Additionally, he has recommended imposing time constraints on jobs involving internet platforms, large workloads, and erratic schedules. In response, the government should strengthen oversight, impose fines on businesses who engage in “invisible overtime,” and enhance the system in place to safeguard workers’ rights against arbitrary and unpaid overtime.

China’s labour rules stipulate that workers cannot work more than eight hours a day, or forty hours a week, on average. Employers should compensate overtime even if they may occasionally extend working hours owing to company needs and output after talking with employees and trade unions for no more than an hour per day.

Many workers do not receive compensation for the hours they work after hours, even though they spend significantly more than an hour in their work groups.

Workers’ Daily, as cited by South China Morning Post, highlights that work arrangements that appear simple, such as sending a message or checking data, can easily transform work into a constant task that needs to be done at any time, potentially turning it into a 24/7, 365-day commitment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *