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WRT Hours and breaks?

(15 Posts)
pinkstinks Wed 05-Oct-11 23:11:31

I have just finished uni and was finding it really hard to get a job relevant to my degree. Rather than give up and claim money etc I decided to go for a job that I wasn't mad about and wasn't relevant to my degree in order to have money coming in. It was a necessity job.

So two months in and im finding it really hard, it is in a large well known pub chain, so the hours are erratic and it is bloody hard work - although i knew this when i accepted.

However, my contract was originally for 29 hours a week, I stupidly signed a form on induction saying i would be happy to work over 40 as I was told this was just to allow me the option If i needed extra cash. I thought this was great as really had wanted a full time job.

This week I have worked 6 days, 55 hours. I have done three closes which means finishing at gone 1am and some days I have had to be in at ten am which I think contravenes some kind of law, but im not sure.

I also did a 12 hour shift on friday and was allowed a forty minute break. Is this illegal because I feel it must be. God knows if i didnt smoke I would have only had half an hour.

If you got this far - well done smile But i suppose what I am asking is should I be receiving more breaks, and if so why do the people that have worked here for ten years put up with this system.

Im not completely cowardly though I have tried to raise these issues before with many of the managers, there are about 6 and either get laughed at or told that they work more hours than me....thats fine but they are salaried and proably on a lot more than under 6 pounds an hour....

wibu to quit and be jobless because my mental health is seriously suffering.....help!!

blonderedhead Wed 05-Oct-11 23:29:55

You are legally required to have an eleven hour break between shifts. The onus is on your employer to ensure this happens. There is no opt-out clause for this. In practice it is hard to approach your employer about this, I know from experience. Print out some info so you can mention it politely but with facts to back you up. If you have a union (even if you don't belong) they can help to advise you.

I'm not 100% on breaks but check the government website.

melpomene Wed 05-Oct-11 23:31:37

Some guidance here and here

Working 12 hours with a 40 min break isn't illegal, but there are rules about breaks between shifts.

redexpat Thu 06-Oct-11 00:07:37

Are you in a union? If not join one quick! They can help with stuf like this.

cakeoholic Thu 06-Oct-11 00:39:43

Rest breaks - a break during your working day

As an adult worker (over 18), you will normally have the right to a 20 minute rest break if you are expected to work more than six hours at a stretch.

A lunch or coffee break can count as your rest break. Additional breaks might be given by your contract of employment. There is no statutory right to 'smoking breaks'.

The requirements are:

the break must be in one block
it cannot be taken off one end of the working day - it must be somewhere in the middle
you are allowed to spend it away from the place on your employer's premises where you work
your employer can say when the break must be taken, as long as it meets these conditions

Daily rest - a break between working days

If you are an adult worker you have the right to a break of at least 11 hours between working days. This means as an adult worker, if you finish work at 8.00 pm on Monday you should not start work until 7.00 am on Tuesday.
Weekly rest - the 'weekend'

If you are an adult worker you have the right to either:

an uninterrupted 24 hours clear of work each week
an uninterrupted 48 hours clear each fortnight

From here

cakeoholic Thu 06-Oct-11 00:40:31

Oh and you are not legally entitled to smoking breaks

M0naLisa Thu 06-Oct-11 01:22:41

Also if your getting paid under £6p/h that's illegal as minimym wage is £6.08 now.

BadDayAtTheOrifice Thu 06-Oct-11 01:46:02

I regularly work shifts of less than 11 hours between them as do thousands of other NHS workers. Not to mention the shifts without breaks.
Not excusing it but wondering how 'they' get away with it?

kickassangel Thu 06-Oct-11 01:57:36

there's a ruling about not being able to be forced to work more than 40 hours in a week. however, if you are willing to, you can (hence you signing that form). some employers would ask you if you're willing to sign the the form, then find a way to let you go if you didn't, thereby letting them pile hours onto staff without staff being able to complain.

pinkstinks Thu 06-Oct-11 09:16:57

Thanks for the advice everyone smile
I will look into joining a union - although I cant see myself sticking around too long to be honest. I have told them I am overwhelmed but they just arent that bothered, so I think it will end with me just quitting.

I got a pay rise to £6.08 last week i think it just hasnt come through on my wages yet.

I know I dont legaslly get smoking breaks, it is just mad that I end up getting more of a break just because I do smoke. Im not even a heavy smoker so sometimes if they say do you want a fag I just say yes to get away from the madness for five minutes, and sit on the roof not smoking!

porcamiseria Thu 06-Oct-11 09:22:15

check direct gov website, but to be honest I think you need to suck it up, sorry this is LIFE, trust me you will get a good job eventually and you will appreciate it so much more for having done this hellhole job

dreamingbohemian Thu 06-Oct-11 09:29:59

Oh no, you don't need to suck it up, at least get a similar job somewhere else that's more reasonable.

I worked in the service industry for years, they don't care about regulations or keeping people happy long-term, they just work people to the breaking point, there are always replacements at hand.

But now that you have some service experience, you can apply for jobs at nicer places. I know it's still not what you want, but better to keep working.

It's the busy season now so you are likely to have a better chance of finding something.

dreamingbohemian Thu 06-Oct-11 09:31:31

Or look for something in retail, it might pay better

pinkstinks Fri 07-Oct-11 11:49:22

Thanks, retail pay is very similar the only reson I am in this pub job is because I was made redundant from my retail job.

Tried again to talk to managers about it today and got the brush off so am continuing the job hunt - its just hard because I have applied to about 100 roles and half of them have sent even no acknolwldegment of individual coverl letters etc or I have had interviews and told I was really good but but not quite there yet, feel like im in a catch twenty two atm, need money so need a job but it is making me seriously unhappy.

yaimee Fri 07-Oct-11 12:19:48

Bar work is rubbish, I've done years of it and it's the same everywhere, my advice is to use any time you have of to search madly for anything else, anything at all!!

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