The European Parliament has voted to end the opt-out, meaning UK employees will be limited to working 48 hours a week.
Commenting on the vote today (Wednesday) in the European Parliament to remove Britain's opt-out from the 48-hour limit on the working week, TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said:
'This is an early Christmas present for Britain's hardest workers, and for the families who see too little of them. Members of the European Parliament have courageously defied the abusers and the slave-drivers over the loss of the 'right' to work people till they drop.
'Britain's workers will still be working hard to get the British economy back on its feet, but they will now be protected from the stress, heart disease and accidents that result from persistent long hours. And their families will get their mums and dads back.
'Now we need to tackle the low pay and poor productivity that were kept alive by long hours working. No one should have to work more than 48 hours a week all year round to put food on the table or a roof over their heads.
'MEPs have dealt Scrooge employers a big blow, and the long hours culture will now become part of Christmas past.'
Source: Workplace Law Network/TUC