Workday in Costa Rica and Mental Health
The average workday in Costa Rica is 8 hours per day and the average number of days per year is 250. Costa Rican labor law does not regulate the number of hours that may be worked, but it does establish that the workday may not exceed 8 hours per day.
Costa Ricans are quite traditional when it comes to family: Ticos spend a lot of time with their families after work.
An 8-Hour Workday
The 8-hour workday is the current norm in Costa Rica. This, although it has not been a problem, in recent years it has been thought that it is time to change it.
Thus, the proposal for a new 48-hour working day per month arose. But by increasing the working day, not only workers but also their families are affected. In fact, what is being sought is to increase the hours in order to reduce the number of working days. In other words, they work 12 hours a day but only for 4 days. At the same time, making sure that everyone is paid for a full day’s work by not exceeding the maximum working time per week.
However, there has been a search for projects where the worker is more protected. For example, the bill proposed by former president Carlos Alvarado and aims to protect the working class from what many see as a growing trend in Costa Rica: long working hours and high levels of stress. The law would allow employers to request permission from the Ministry of Labor before requiring employees to work more than 8 hours per day. It also provides for overtime compensation, an increase in salary and a reduction in working hours.
Work has always been a topic of debate in society. Stress and anxiety are two of the most common mental health problems suffered by people today. An OECD study found that Costa Ricans work longer hours than any other developed country, averaging up to 43 hours per week. This is one of the reasons why mental health is such an important issue in Costa Rica.
To minimize the negative effects on their mental health, many Costa Ricans have begun working fewer hours or not working at all. In fact, in recent years there has been a dramatic increase in self-employment and entrepreneurship rates that have also helped to improve mental health.
In addition, the Costa Rican government has been working on a new law to help protect workers from the harmful effects of long hours and stressful jobs. The new law is called the “Law for the Protection of Workers’ Health”.
- The 8-hour workday is the current norm in Costa Rica.
- The Costa Rican government has been working on a new law to help protect workers from the harmful effects of long hours and stressful jobs.
- Work has always been a topic of debate in society.
Zelda Walters for Sensorial Sunsets