March 13, 2024

Rep. Takano’s Thirty-Two Hour Workweek Act Gains Senate Companion Bill Introduced by Sen. Sanders

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) introduced the Senate companion bill to Congressman Mark Takano’s (CA-39) Thirty-Two Hour Workweek Act. This legislation would reduce the standard workweek from 40 hours to 32 hours by amending the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and lowering the maximum hours threshold for overtime compensation for non-exempt employees. 

“As the lead sponsor of the Thirty-Two Hour Workweek Act in the House of Representatives and a Senior Member of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, I am thrilled that Senator Sanders is leading the Senate companion to this transformative legislation that will be a win for both workers and workplaces,” said Rep. Takano. 

“Moving to a 32-hour workweek with no loss of pay is not a radical idea,” said Sen. Sanders. “Today, American workers are over 400 percent more productive than they were in the 1940s. And yet, millions of Americans are working longer hours for lower wages than they were decades ago. That has got to change. The financial gains from the major advancements in artificial intelligence, automation, and new technology must benefit the working class, not just corporate CEOs and wealthy stockholders on Wall Street. It is time to reduce the stress level in our country and allow Americans to enjoy a better quality of life. It is time for a 32-hour workweek with no loss in pay.”

The Thirty-Two Hour Workweek Act does not make any changes or limit the number of hours that an employee may work in a standard workweek but amends the definition of the workweek in federal law. The majority of workers impacted would be non-exempt, hourly workers, but some salaried workers fall under the scope of the bill’s provisions. This legislation has the potential to increase wage-earning opportunities for a larger number of workers by limiting the number of hours required to reach the full-time threshold, as well as allow for better work-life balance and overall health outcomes.  

Full text of the House version of the Thirty-Two Hour Workweek Act is available here. A one pager can be found here.