Allow flexible working during heatwave, says union
- Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto
Avoiding the sweltering daily commute and dressing casually can help people keep cool, advises the TUC
With temperatures predicted to nudge 37°C in East Anglia today, employers have been called upon to allow flexible working and to keep workplaces cool, so staff can work as comfortably as possible during the heatwave.
The call comes from trade union body, TUC, which has urged bosses to allow staff to work at different times of the day or from home, so they can avoid the sweltering and unpleasant conditions of the rush hour commute.
The TUC's regional secretary for the East of England, Sam Gurney, said: "It's about looking genuinely at when the work needs to be done, maybe so people can start earlier or finish later and take more breaks in the middle part of the day when temperatures are at their highest."
Jacket and tie
You may also want to watch:
The organisation has also called on companies to take simple steps to keep offices cool, such as opening windows, using fans and moving staff away from windows. It has also suggested temporarily relaxing strict workplace dress codes, so people are able to remove ties and jackets and wear more casual, lightweight clothes whilst temperatures are soaring.
"Most of this is about using common sense, being flexible and people talking to each other about what will help," continued Mr Gurney.
- 1 Boss who boasted of lavish lifestyle is bankrupt with £100k debts
- 2 History of the Cook cull - a look back at his busy transfer windows with Chesterfield, Portsmouth and Wigan
- 3 Felixstowe beach hut goes on sale for record price
- 4 Woman's body found in village home
- 5 Indian Covid variant being monitored in Suffolk after one case confirmed
- 6 A14 delays as police deal with incident near Orwell Bridge
- 7 A14 re-opens after medical emergency
- 8 ‘Unique’ farm in coveted river setting hits market for first time in 60 years
- 9 Couple were found 'slumped over' on their sofa, inquest hears
- 10 How many of these 11 award-winning Suffolk food businesses do you know?
"It is in everyone's interest to co-operate and talk to each other - I've been sitting in a meeting today and it's been sweltering. It [the heat] needs to be taken into account and dealt with in a practical way."
And while this current heatwave is expected to break by the weekend, Mr Gurney says the lessons learnt during this hot spell might lead to businesses reflecting on their working arrangements.
"This weather is not going to last forever," he continued, "but people might take lessons from the benefits of flexible working.
"Flexible working works both ways - it's not all on the side of the employee. It can benefit employees who have caring responsibilities and help with work-life balance and all the studies show that with good flexible working arrangements productivity goes up and the workforce is happier."
Mr Gurney added that the hot weather is also a particular problem in East Anglia for people working outside in agriculture.
He said employers should make sure workers in the field have shade cover, are able to recognise the signs of heat stroke, have access to water and can take adequate time off for breaks.