The Issues: Working Hours

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Key Takeaways
  • Very low wages in the garment industry force workers to work excessive hours to make ends meet – far beyond the recommended 48-hour week. 
  • Study shows 97 per cent of garment factories surveyed in Bangladesh depended on excessive overtime, including 60-hour weeks. 
  • Last-minute order changes and shorter turnaround times put pressure on factories to meet demand by insisting on overtime

Many workers in garment and fashion supply chains experience extremely long working hours and are often required to work excessive overtime. 

The standard working week in the garment industry should typically be no more than 48 hours, spread over six working days, excluding overtime. Including overtime, workers should not be required to work more than 60 hours over any seven-day period. Workers should also be given at least one day off in every seven, or two days in every 14 days, as a minimum…