It seems that the Johor state government may be taking the lead in promoting work-life balance.
According to The Star, a state assemblyman said the state government is considering implementing a four and a half working day instead of five per week.
Speaking to the daily, Pasir Raja ADUN Nor Rashidah Ismail said since the current rest days are different for civil servants, private-sector workers and schoolchildren, families cannot have quality time together.
“The standardisation of rest days of all people in Johor is important for their well-being,” she said.
She then mentioned that countries such as Belgium, Iceland, Scotland, Spain, Japan and the United Arab Emirates are practising a 4-day work week.
“If productivity is the subject of debate, then I suggest this option where we work full time from Monday to Thursday with an additional hour of working time.”
“If working hours were 8 am to 5 pm before, then the implementation of this proposal would see working hours from 8 am to 6 pm from Monday to Thursday.”
“Then there will be half-day working hours on Friday, which is from 8 am to noon where Muslim workers are still able to comfortably perform their Friday prayers,” she added.
Meanwhile, Johor Jaya ADUN Liow Cai Tung suggested that the state government hasten its study on the rest day issue so that it can be presented to the Sultan of Johor.
“The state is among the main contributors to the nation’s economy. Standardising rest days with private entities will enhance productivity, efficiency and Johor’s tourism sector,” she said.
Last week, Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi said the state government is reviewing the state’s rest days, which currently fall on Fridays and Saturdays, so that parents and their children could have their days off at the same time.
The change of the state’s rest days to Fridays and Saturdays instead of Saturdays and Sundays was imposed since 1 Jan 2014.