• France's news in English

French Red Cross faces fine for overworked staff

Oliver Gee · 1 Jun 2015, 11:12

Published: 01 Jun 2015 11:12 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit
France is famed for its 35-hour working week - and it appears the Red Cross wasn't aware of it. 
A 200-plus page report by the French Labour Inspectorate said the organization has committed over 3,800 violations of working-hour regulations with almost 500 employees. 
Most of these violations come from staff members working over the legal limit of ten hours a day, while a large proportion of them come from staff working more than the maximum legal limit of 48 hours a week.
One union spokesperson said workers could be on the job from 7am to 8pm on any given day.
The Red Cross is now looking at a fine of €750 for each infraction, which will take its total bill to €2.8 million. 
But once it factors in all the overtime pay and compensation for damages, the organization will be looking at a bill closer to €11 million, reported French newspaper Le Parisien.
Red Cross explained their lack of adherence to the rules as part of the package when it came to emergency work. 
Story continues below…
"In emergency and first-aid operations and in responding to disasters in France and internationally, our missions demand a high degree of mobilisation and availability of our employees and charity workers, regardless of the time of day or night... unfortunately emergencies give no warning," the charity said on Sunday.
The potential fines could prove extremely damaging to the Red Cross, which posted a loss of €5 million last year.
Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
How life for expats in France has changed over the years
A market in Eymet, southwestern France. Photo: AFP

Foreigners in France explain how life has changed over the years.

London calling for Calais youths, but only a chosen few
Photo: AFP

Dozens of Calais minors are still hanging their hopes on help from the UK, but not all will be so lucky.

17 different ways to talk about sex in French
Photo: Helga Weber/Flickr

Fancy a quick run with the one-legged man?

Yikes! This is what a rat-infested French jail looks like
Photo: YouTube/France Bleu TV.

This video is not for sufferers of ratophobia (or musophobia as the condition is officially called).

France to allow Baby Jesus in Town Halls this Christmas
Photo: AFP

Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus are safe to go on display again this year, it seems.

National Front posts locations of migrants in French town
The National Front courts controversy. Photo: AFP

"Local tax payers have a right to know," says local far-right party chief.

Paris thieves use tear gas to steal €500,000 of watches
Photo: AFP

The thieves pretended to be couriers then threatened staff with tear gas to get the watches.

Bataclan survivor recounts attack in chilling drawings
Photo: BFMTV screengrab

One survivor has recounted the horrific night through illustrations.

Anger among French police grows as Hollande vows talks
French police demonstrate on the Champs Elysées. Photo: AFP

A fourth night of protests shows government efforts to ease anger among French police have been fruitless.

UK border must move back, says 'next French president'
Photo: AFP

If favourite Alain Juppé is elected, Britain and France are in for some difficult negotiations.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Why Toulouse is THE place to be in France right now
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Video: New homage to Paris shows the 'real side' of city
The 'most dangerous' animals you can find in France
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swap London fogs for Paris frogs: France woos the Brits
Anger after presenter kisses woman's breasts on live TV
Is France finally set for a cold winter this year?
IN PICS: The story of the 'ghost Metro stations' of Paris
How to make France's 'most-loved' dish: Magret de Canard
Welcome to the flipside: 'I'm not living the dream in France'
Do the French really still eat frogs' legs?
French 'delicacies' foreigners really find hard to stomach
French are the 'world's most pessimistic' about the future
Why the French should not be gloomy about the future
This is the most useful French lesson you will ever have. How to get angry
Why is there a giant clitoris in a field in southern France?
French pastry wars: Pain au chocolat versus chocolatine
Countdown: The ten dishes the French love the most
Expats or immigrants in France: Is there a difference?
How the French reinvented dozens of English words
The ups and downs of being both French and English
How Brexit vote has changed life for expats in France
Twelve French insults we'd love to have in English
What's on in France: Ten of the best events in October
jobs available