Media folk working an extra seven hours a week, claims Trade Union Congress

Journalists and other media workers could be working up to an extra seven hours a week claims the Trades Union Congress.

Media website, journalism.co.uk, reports that the TUC’s findings are based on the official government Labour Force Survey which suggests that the average employee in the media industry works 7.4 hours on top of their contracted hours each week - an average of about £5400 of free labour per year.

Journalists come fourth in the TUC's league table for the percentage of people working unpaid overtime (50% of all staff) behind the teaching, banking and health sectors.

NUJ general secretary Michelle Stanistreet is quoted as claiming the unpaid overtime problem was "rife in our industry".

She added; "Cuts to editorial posts and recruitment freezes mean that many are working longer and longer hours. We are all prepared to go the extra mile when required, but members are routinely covering for their former colleagues and working excessive hours.

"Make sure that you and your colleagues have a proper break and go home when your shift is supposed to end; employers cannot rely on your goodwill forever. Make home-time your deadline."

She added: “A record 5.26 million people worked unpaid overtime last year, the highest since records began in 1992. This will not be news to journalists – the problem is rife in our industry."