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learner support for workers | balancing work and child-care | nurse at work

These are changing times. We live in an age when high quality goods and services are demanded outside of normal working or opening hours.

Competitiveness, flexibility and quality services are key concepts in the organisation of work today – as are job security, job satisfaction and fairness.

The successful employer, private or public, has to deliver on all these. This means

  • involving staff in decisions about change
  • making sure their needs and aspirations are considered
  • winning their commitment to new ways of working.

One of the most essential ingredients in the organisation of work is time:

  • when we work
  • for how long
  • how we balance working time with time outside of work.

These are difficult issues which we have to resolve in the UK:

  • British workers work the longest hours in Europe
  • stress is the greatest cause of absence from work
  • many organisations have not introduced family-friendly working, despite encouragement from government and positive reports from organisations which have.

Family-friendly concerns are not the only consideration – finding the time for learning, or taking part in community life, are equally powerful motivators for balancing life at work with life outside.


Latest News:

The most recent documents available in this 'TUC in action' area are:

Changing Times Newsletter No. 84
CONTENTS Union news: Unions welcome improved job rights * Don't make workers wait for their hols * Petition reveals BBC nursery anger * Chancellor praises Usdaw work-life lead Other news: Top firms join part-time work scheme * Bosses ignorant on maternity rights * Call for maternity help for small firms * Welsh business leaders back flexible work * News in brief Events: Work Wise Week, 16-22 May 2007 Resources: ACAS guide on flexible working * Maternity and parental rights guide * New from Eurofound International news: Global: Call for action on gender equality goals * Japan: Women cabin crew win payout * Global round-up.

Changing Times Newsletter No.83
CONTENTS Special feature – the Work and Families Act: Work and Families Act 2006 takes effect * Are employers up to the Act? * Bosses mixed on new work-life rights * Carers UK prepares employers for new duties * Usdaw throws a work-life balance thank you party Union news: Government must act on council equal pay, says TUC * Woman BA pilot wins flexible working fight * Shopworkers win big store xmas breaks Other news: Blair outlines vision for 'flexi-Britain' * Mothers face most prejudice at work * Working flat out and feeling fed up * Cautious welcome for Brown's benefits package * Lib Dems launch flexible work campaign * Firms get help with new maternity rules * News in brief Resources: Working women's daily news * ILO resource guide on workplace gender equality International news: Australia: Long work hours linked to family breakdown * Europe: Unions call for action on work-life balance * Global round-up

Changing Times Newsletter No 82
Union news: BBC children in need... of nurseries * Schools learn work-life balance lessons * TUC warns consultation misses temp work troubles * Union reps really make a difference * Venture capitalists don't care about workers Other news: Unbalanced future faces families * Minister seeks flexible working for all * New plan to force lone parents back to work * Parents “cannot afford” rising childcare costs * News in brief Events: 23 February – the time to stop working! * Better balance better business conference, Cardiff, 29 March * Supporting women at work conference, Bristol, 25 April Resources: ATL work-life balance toolkit * Irish Work Life Balance website International news: Europe: More work hours mean less balance * Joint action working on gender inequalities * USA: More women becoming major breadwinners * Global round-up

Older documents 7 - 12


Carers and Parents Coalition
The Equal Opportunities Commission have organised a coalition to champion the rights of parents and carers. The TUC is pleased to be part of this coalition.

The Work Foundation
The Work Foundation (formerly The Industrial Society) focus on research, practical consultancy and constructive advocacy to make workplaces more effective, successful and fulfilling.


NB. photos supplied by
Duncan Philips / reportdigital.co.uk