Progress | Centre-left Labour politics

Working hard or hardly a working week

This is originally from the Progress Daily Email. If you like what you see and would like to sign up to receive it, click here.

The Democratic Unionist party has accused Theresa May of preparing to renege on her promise not to allow for a border in the Irish sea as party of a Brexit transition. This is particularly bad news for Brexit secretary Dominic Raab, who has only just got to grips with the concept of a border between the UK and France, which is relatively beginners’ stuff when it comes to this kind of thing.

Labour, meanwhile, is looking at the future of work – including the possibility of cutting the working week from five days to four. This is something that Scott Corfe, chief economist at the Social Market Foundation, has examined for our latest magazine. He argues that with the onset of automation, we could be on the cusp of a ‘leisure society’ that increases the potential to reduce hours while not reducing wages.

It is an interesting concept, but there are a couple of reasons to be hesitant. The TUC backed the idea earlier this year, but general secretary Frances O’Grady’s support was to aim to bring it through by the end of the century, which is a much slower introductory period than many of its most vocal proponents envision. The other point of contention could be in the wisdom of prioritising this over solving other connected issues, such as insecure work in the gig economy, where a shift to a four-day week may be meaningless. For a full debate on this topic, listen to one of the live specials of the Progressive Britain podcast, featuring Alison McGovern and Wes Streeting.

-Conor Pope, deputy editor


Latest on Progress

Rise of leisure society: how could a four-day week work?

A four or three-day working week could become the norm for full-time workers over the coming decades, writes Scott Corfe

Read now >>>

The Insider: Labour’s conference divisions

Your Insider discusses the biggest row at annual conference, the cost of Labour Live, and unity within the Labour party

Read now >>>



Voting is now open in the Progress strategy board elections. The Progress strategy board exists to guide the work of Progress, and ensure the strategic aims of the organisation.

Click here to see your candidates.


The Progressive Britain Podcast

Conor Pope and Stephanie Lloyd discuss the overlooked good news from this week’s US elections, as well as what different responses to the budget tell us about Labour’s new approach.

Listen >>>


Five things to read today

People with autism and learning disabilities are being failed by government inertia
Luciana Berger, Times

Populists in Power Around the World
Jordan Kyle, Limor Gultchin, Tony Blair Institute for Global Change

Conservative Brexiteers have no alternative to May’s deal – but will they care?
Stephen Bush, New Statesman

Revealed: Arron Banks’s staff crunched millions of voters’ data after Brexit vote
Peter Geoghegan and Jenna Corderoy, OpenDemocracyUK

Why it’s good to talk about men’s mental health
Nathan Yeowell, Medium


Sign up to this email

 

Progressive centre-ground Labour politics does not come for free.

It takes time, commitment and money to build a fight against the forces of conservatism. If you value the work Progress does, please support us by becoming a member, subscriber or donating.

Our work depends on you.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Conor Pope

is deputy editor at Progress

Sign up to our daily roundup email

int(0)