Labour Day

Tomorrow is Labour Day, the day we remember the 40 hour working week. This is something we should be grateful for. In many countries, workers are expected to work long hours for no extra pay. In New Zealand, workers usually are paid overtime pay if they work more than 8 hours in a day. However, things are changing in New Zealand, partly because unions do not have the power that they used to. Fewer people join unions these days. Unions want good pay and working conditions for the workers but when there is unemployment, it is much harder to demand these things. People are afraid to lose their jobs. One example where workers do not have good conditions of employment is a zero-hours contract. Listen to Zero-hours contracts for more about this.

Listen to Labour Day to hear the story about the 40-hour working week.


  • grateful – feel pleased about this
  • overtime – extra hours of work
  • union – a group of workers in the same job
  • working conditions – includes things like tea breaks, comfortable place to work etc
  • demand – ask very strongly

One Comments

  1. Thanks for the great work you have done for esol students and teachers.

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