Jeremy Corbyn caused ITV general election audience members to burst out laughing as he defended the benefits of a four-day working week for all Britons. The Labour Party announced they will seek to reduce the average working week to 32 hours within the next 10 years with no loss of pay for British workers. But as Mr Corbyn discussed the health and economic benefits of his plans, members of the audience began to laugh and sneer at the Labour leader.
Mr Corbyn said: “It is about reducing the working week all across the economy, paid for by productivity increases all across.
“Britain works longer – people need to be aware that, actually, a shorter working week is probably a good thing for their health and well-being, as is decent pay.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson cast doubts at the proposal suggesting a shorter working week would place a heavier “burden” on public services like the NHS.
Mr Johnson said: “Don’t forget that under Labour, they ruined the public finances, they did. There was no money left.
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“The economy has grown every year in the last nine years and what could be more ruinous for the NHS than a crackpot plan for a four-day week which would add massively to the burdens of the NHS and other public services.”
As part of their general election pledges, the Labour Party promised to outspend the Tory to rise the NHS budget to £155bn within three years. The Government pledge £149bn as part of the last budget presented last year.
Jeremy Corbyn suggested the extra money would be used to help cut waiting time and improve mental health services – but Health Secretary Matt Hancock claimed the excess funds would be eaten away to compensate for the shorter working week.
Mr Hancock warned the new working hours policy would “cripple our economy and cost the NHS billions every year, a claim Labour rejected insisting the plan to implement the new routine over ten years would mitigate the impact on the overall economy.
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