Ban on overtime and shift swaps

This page has information on what to do during a ban on overtime and shift swaps.

The union website has information on which work tasks the ban on overtime and/or shift swaps applies to. When JHL has made an union decision on an industrial action, it is binding to members.

We will notify separately of exceptions concerning various agreement sectors.

Why has JHL decided on a ban on overtime and/or shift swaps?

When the collective agreement negotiations are not moving forward, a ban on overtime and/or shift swaps is used as a method for exerting pressure.

What does a ban on overtime mean?

During a ban on overtime, everyone works only regular hours. No overtime work is done.

Overtime work is work that exceeds regular working hours. The work is done on the employer’s request and with the employee’s consent. Doing overtime work is always voluntary in an employment relationship.

During a ban on overtime it is forbidden to, say,

  • accrue flex hours
  • do overtime work
  • be on call outside one’s regular working hours if the working hours extend to overtime work during the time one is on call, or travel.

Office-holders/government employees cannot refuse overtime work, if working overtime is necessary because of the nature of the job and extremely weighty grounds.

The union will notify separately on whether ordering additional work falls within the ban on overtime.

What does a ban on shift swaps mean?

During a ban on shift swaps, everyone complies with the confirmed shift roster.

The ban on shift swaps concerns a shift swap suggested by the employer. Swaps can be made if the employees can agree on them with each other in accordance with established practice. It is possible that the employer will prevent the employees from taking own initiative to swap shifts as a countermeasure to the ban on overtime and shift swaps.

During a ban on overtime and shift swaps, a shop steward does not make any local agreements initiated by the employer concerning working hours.

There is no obligation to notify of a ban on overtime and shift swaps in advance, contrary to notifying of a strike. This means that the ban may be put into place quickly.

Collective agreements may include stipulations on changing the confirmed shift roster. Check your collective agreement and/or collective bargaining agreement.

General instructions for ban on overtime and/or shift swaps

  • If you are asked to continue your shift, to swap it or to work an extra shift, refuse on the grounds of the ban on overtime and/or shift swaps.
  • If your employer orders you to continue your shift despite this, you should stay at work. You will then avoid a groundless termination of employment. Immediately notify the shop steward or the union’s regional office of the matter. Demand your employer to give the order in a verifiable format: E-mail, text message or with the form named Order given by employer. Hold on to the message you received and deliver it to your shop steward or regional office.
  • If there is pressuring involved in the situation, or if the employer representative is threatening you, contact your shop steward or the union’s regional office immediately. Tell the employer representative that this kind of action is inappropriate.
  • This is a ban that your trade union has declared. You are not personally responsible for the ban or its consequences. If you suspect that you will be under pressure from your employer, contact the shop steward or regional office.
  • The ban has been put to place with your interests in mind. Its purpose is to put pressure on the negotiating table.
  • JHL members follow JHL’s instructions. The instructions given by the unions may differ from each other.

The employer may not necessarily settle for being subjected to an industrial action. They will likely take active countermeasures. JHL is prepared for the countermeasures. For more information, contact your shop steward or the regional office.

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