With how easy communication is these days, work requests being answered during off-hours tends to happen quite a bit. There are European countries like France have previously passed laws that allow employees to ignore employers after hours, which gives citizens right to disconnect. It appears that this may be coming to New Yorkers pretty soon with a new bill proposed by the city council.
According to The New York Times, the average New Yorker works more than 49 hours per week, which is longer than those of their larger cities in the US. Additionally, the Times report that workers spend an extra eight hours per week managing email after work, per 2017 survey.
The new bill won’t make it illegal to ask employees to check their email or other forms of communication after working hours are over, but will allow employees to ignore threats or retaliation, should they choose to not respond after-hours. “This bill would make it unlawful for private employees in the city of New York to require employees to check and respond to email and other electronic communications during non-work hours,” according to the bill’s abstract.
If passed into law, it would apply to any business with 10 or more employees that are doing business in the municipality. If this proves to be successful, it could prompt other cities to adopt the same riles.