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Norwegians work for free

Norwegians work for free like never before because of the current situation on the labor market. Unpaid overtime becomes more and more common.

Employees work an increasingly amount of hours without getting paid of it, according to new research. As of now, employees do not get paid for every fifth hour of overtime, according to the Norwegian paper Dagsavisen.

Annual surveys conducted by Statistics Norway since 1996 indicates that full time employees are not paid for between 21 and 25 percent of all the overtime they work.

“Until about 1990, people believed that they had a secure job as long as they wanted to keep it, but suddenly people were made redundant in both private and public sector,” said Thoralf Qvale at Arbeidsforskningsinsituttet.

Numbers indicate that during the second quarter in 2003 while 58 percent of the overtime worked was paid for and 21 percent was compensated in form of time off, 21 percent of the hours were not compensated for at all. In total, this overtime equals 57,000 man hours or 4.3 percent of all the man hours worked by full time employees.

“The downswing has contributed to making many people redundant in large part of the work life,” Qvale stated. “The companies which survived have gotten more work now without hiring more people. In other words, this means that many companies today work with considerably less employees than they did before.”

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