A shorter workweek in Israel is being discussed.
Israel Justice minister Tzipi Livni has pointed out that many Israelis work six days a week including Friday, before Shabbat begins that evening. This reduces available time for personal errands, time with family or time to relax. She has joined a bid to make Sunday an extra day off from work. The experience of Iceland and statistics from Microsoft suggest an increase in productivity results from an extra day off.
On the other hand, the idea of a shorter workweek has been opposed in the Knesset by Arab Knesset members and by Shas party’s spiritual leader Rabbi Ovadia Yosef. Arguments opposed to a shorter workweek suggest it would allow Western culture to overtake Jewish values. The national Histadrut labor union claims a shorter workweek would create complicated agreements with employers and the government. United Arab MK Taleb a-Sanaa believes a shorter workweek would “harm everything connected with the Arab population in Israel.”
Written by Richard J Paracka