BBC poll reveals more than half of office workers eat at their desks

Tim Lezard

sandwichThe TUC has called for a change in culture after a poll published today by BBC Breakfast shows that more than half of office employees regularly work through their lunch breaks.

TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “These figures shine a spotlight on Britain’s long-hours culture. Far too many employees are failing to take lunch because they have too much work to do.

“It is essential that employers recognise the damage this can do to their staff and to the productivity of their workforce. Workers who skip lunch and don’t take time away from their desks in the middle of the day are likely to become less productive as the day wears on and are also taking risks with their health.

“We need to change the culture – prevalent in far too many workplaces – that it is acceptable to eat lunch at your desk, and not leave your workspace.”

Last year, the TUC found that employees across the UK worked nearly two billion unpaid hours, worth over £29bn to the economy.

On 1 March it will be the ninth Work Your Proper Hours Day, when employees across the UK will be encouraged to work their proper hours which includes taking a decent lunch break.


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Tim Lezard

Campaigning journalist, editor of @Union_NewsUK, NUJ exec member; lover of cricket, football, cycling, theatre and dodgy punk bands

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