Ontario’s Liberals say they will consider a four-day workweek if elected next year.
Party leader Steven Del Duca made the announcement Sunday at the party’s annual general meeting.
He said the Liberals would launch a pilot project whereby employees would work the same number of hours, but over four days instead of five, allowing for a three-day break
He also announced his government would resume the universal basic income pilot that was cancelled by the Ford government.
“We’ll be the party that puts workers first, and that helps our province transition to a new way of doing things,” said Del Duca. “We’re supposed to work to live, not live to work.”
Four-day workweeks have been tested in New Zealand, Japan, Scotland, and Spain.
Del Duca noted the pandemic has fundamentally changed the way people think about their jobs. He added major changes are required to keep people safe, protect their mental health, and make sure everyone has access to the same opportunities.
“People want the chance to work hard and work meaningfully, without their job having a brutally negative impact on families, mental health, the environment, and quality of life,” he said. “We need people in Ontario, particularly the next generation of workers, to believe they can live happy lives and pursue rewarding careers right here.”
Del Duca went to say the Liberals will soon release other election policies that will “reflect the new realities of our workforce.”