Countless people in New York work more than 40 hours a week or outside the conventional 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule. Non-traditional schedules can be exhausting and, in some cases, illegal.
Rest break rules
If you work certain jobs, you may be entitled to rest periods during or between shifts. If an employer does not comply with these rules, they could face legal claims and costly consequences. Thus, it is important to remain informed about changes in the law regarding rest breaks.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) recently announced a new rule, requiring that flight attendants be granted longer rest periods between their shifts. Under this new rule, flight attendants will be entitled to 10 consecutive hours of rest between shifts. The change goes into effect in November.
Rest and worker safety
Rest breaks benefit employees and employers alike. Studies show that breaks can reduce stress and improve productivity. When workers have the chance to sleep and recover, they make fewer mistakes on the job and are more creative in problem-solving. Considering the important role of the crew in maintaining passenger and cabin safety, risks associated with cabin crew fatigue must be managed carefully. Adequate rest periods between shifts can keep flight attendants alert and focused, ameliorating risks to passengers while improving service.
Other industries with rest requirements
Workers have rights regarding breaks and mealtimes, though they vary based on worker categorization, the number of hours they work, and their job duties.
Mandated time off between shifts generally affects people in high-risk industries, where fatigue can put workers and other people in danger. Truck drivers, flight attendants, and rail workers may fall under these mandatory rest requirements. Even if a law does not require employers to provide rest times between shifts, some industries, such as the healthcare industry, may choose to set their own rules regarding rest periods.
Your employer must comply with mandatory rest periods between shifts and wage adjustments for split shifts if you work in an industry where these adjustments are required. Failure to do so may constitute grounds for a legal claim to protect the employee’s rights and to pursue compensation. It is important to speak to an attorney about your options.