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'It's just been a win-win': More Maritime municipalities are trying out a 4-day workweek


More Maritime municipalities are testing a four-day workweek to see if working fewer days can help boost workplace morale and productivity.

The Town of Quispamsis in New Brunswick will be piloting its four-day workweek for its employees starting next month.

"The five-day workweek, you might argue, is a bit of an antiqued notion, and why not give it a try and see if we can be just as efficient, as effective, through four days of the week than through five, and I think that we can," said Aaron Kennedy, the acting CAO of the Town of Quispamsis.

The town’s pilot project will run for 24 weeks, beginning May 1 and ending in the middle of October.

"We're excited about the opportunity to see what will unfold," said Kennedy.

"So, we've basically broken up our municipal staff into two teams. One team will work Monday to Thursday, the other team will work Tuesday to Friday, and then we'll flip."

Michelle Child, who works for the Town of Quispamsis, says she's pleased with the pilot project and what it could mean for her.

"I think anybody with a family, especially, I mean, I have three children, so it's going to be nice to have that extra time with them," she said. "I think all around, it's going to work out well."

And the Town of Quispamsis isn't alone. Sackville, N.B., is also considering moving to a four-day workweek.

"I think, sometimes, you need to take a step back and look a little inward at your workforce and lead by example," said Jamie Burke, the CAO of the Town of Sackville.

"Show them that the work they do is important, and I think this is one program we can try and see if it can be a win-win all around."

In Nova Scotia, the Municipality of the District of Guysborough has made its four-day workweek pilot program permanent.

"Honestly, it's been an uplift in the workplace. Our sick leave has fallen dramatically, the sick-leave numbers, and it's just been a win-win," said Municipality of the District of Guysborough CAO Barry Carroll.

Carroll says, while sick leave has gone down, he believes productivity has gone up.

He says the new program has attracted attention from across Canada and even internationally.

"We're done interviews with BBC, we've had some conversations with communities in Scotland, but certainly right across Canada and some in the U.S. have contacted us," he said.

"And I'll tell you, a lot of those come back to us afterward and say we now have the four-day workweek." Top Stories

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