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Entitlement to Uninterrupted Rest Days (pre 1 April 2015)

  CODE OF PRACTICE - as if 1 April 2015 this code this code is no longer in force and is provided for historical reference only. It has been superseded by the an amendment to the Employment (Jersey) Law 2003

Code of Practice - Entitlement to Uninterrupted Rest Days

Introduction

1. Under the terms of Article 9 of the Jersey Advisory and Conciliation Law 2003, the Employment and Social Security Committee is empowered to issue or approve Codes of Practice providing practical guidance for the purpose of promoting the improvement of employment relations. This Code is intended to provide such guidance on entitlement to uninterrupted rest days.

2. The provisions of this Code are admissible in evidence and may be taken into account in determining any question arising in proceedings before the Employment Tribunal or a court. Failure to observe any provision of the Code does not, of itself, render a person liable to any proceedings.

3. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure that the summary of the relevant statutory provisions included in the Code is accurate, only the Employment Tribunal and the courts can interpret the law authoritatively.

What counts as uninterrupted for the purpose of rest day entitlement?

The law states that rest days must be 'uninterrupted', but does not define the word or specify whether time spent on-call or standby counts as uninterrupted.

The requirement to provide 'uninterrupted' rest days could potentially cause difficulties for organisations with call-out and standby arrangements, which guarantee uninterrupted provision of service and emergency services in various organisations, and meeting operational urgency through shifts and standby.

A definition of what constitutes 'interrupted' is therefore provided, as follows;

A rest period should be considered to have been interrupted if, either contractually, or due to business requirements, the employee is required by the employer to do one of the following on their rest day;

  • to be available at the employers' disposal to take a work related action away from the workplace (e.g. at home, on the telephone).
  • attend the workplace, or
  • be at or near the place of work.

If the employee's rest day is interrupted, compensatory rest must be made available within 14 days of the rest days that were interrupted.  If a rest day is not interrupted, it counts as a 'rest day' and no compensatory rest would be required

A 14 day period is reasonable so that compensatory rest is providedat the earliest opportunity after the interrupted rest day, rather than extending into subsequent 14 day periods. This is mainly to ensure that benefit of rest breaks is not lost.

It would be considered reasonable to spell out, either in an employee's contract or collective agreement, any special arrangements with regard to the interruption of rest days, in accordance with the provisions of this code. 

March 2015

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