France is most probably the friendliest country to its employees when it comes to working terms and conditions that ensure happy people enabling it to scoop slot 23 in the happiest countries.
France has hit the headlines a number of times for enacting laws that seek to protect employees giving them time to be all-around. The most recent law protects France employees from employers who overlook the right of their employees to have personal time and seek to exploit them at ungodly hours.
The law, popular as ‘the right to disconnect’, requires that a company with over 50 employees should not email or try to make contact with an employee on official matters after set work hours.
‘The right to disconnect’ enables employees to seek legal redress whenever they feel denied personal time by the companies that insist on following them after working hours.
France also gives its employees 30 days off a year and 16 weeks of full-paid family leave in addition to the ‘right to disconnect’. Studies have proven severally that most employees are unable to have a life or maximize their potential as individuals due to long working hours that limit their productivity and ability to be creative.
Lacking the ability to fully disconnect from work restrains the brain from focusing on other opportunities that one could excel at.
Think of a weekend read and then an urgent work call, that seems habitual, comes through requiring you to attend to official duty, you get distracted and are unlikely to continue the read with the same comprehension as before the call.
The inability to disconnect from work fully denies the brain and body the time it requires to rest, replenish and recreate better ideas and could easily lead to lifestyle diseases, mood disorders and physical health complications such as backaches.
Uncontrolled worktexts, emails, calls, and messages past working hours literally colonize lives where individuals leave their work stations but carry the work in their heads making an unending sequence that has with time contributed to rise of lifestyle diseases.
The ‘right to disconnect’ law stipulates that companies must negotiate policies that limit the spillover of work past working hours.
The law has not stipulated any penalties for the companies caught contravening the law but they are required to have “charters of good conduct” where it shall be specified hours when employees are completely free from being contacted on official duties or work-related issues.
In Kenya, the discussion on ‘the right to disconnect’ cannot even arise given the already ballooning statistics on unemployment which employers use to threaten employees on their easy replacements.
Exploitive working conditions and regular harassment in work stations in Kenya often go unpunished for fear of one losing their jobs. Stories narrated under hashtags that often trend on social media #Toxicworkplaces #Toxicworkspaces are evidence of the poor state for workers in Kenya, especially the middle and low income-earners.
Kenyan legislatures cannot relate to the stories narrated under #Toxicworkplaces #Toxicworkspaces given their unreasonable allowances and demands that have even featured blind masseuse at one point.
Kenya’s elected members of parliament enjoy the best working conditions the Earth has ever known and are in regular disconnect with the reality of what their voters undergo hence their inability to formulate and pass laws that protect working Kenyans.