To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many employees in his Department have (a) signed a formal opt out from and (b) are exempt from the Working Time Directive; and how many employees in his Department have recorded hours, including any accruing on a flexitime basis, in excess of the maximum allowed under the Working Time Directive in the last month for which figures are available.
Currently 18 staff in the Treasury have signed voluntary agreements to disapply the 48 hour limit. No staff are exempt from the Working Time Directive. Comprehensive records are not available to show how many staff have worked in excess of 48 hours per week. The regulations require that the 48 hour limit is measured over a 17 week period but a flexibility introduced in 1999 removed the requirement for employers to keep records of the hours worked by staff who voluntarily agree to disapply the limit. The Treasury remains committed to reducing the amount of excess hours worked.