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French collective agreement sparks renewed debate around after-hours email
By Liz Bernier
|Canadian HR Reporter|Last Updated: 05/30/2014

It’s a common complaint among employees: Long after the workday is done, after-hours emails digitally tether them to the office. Whether the message is from a boss, colleague or customer, employees can feel obligated to respond — even when they’re off the clock.

The issue has seen its fair share of media attention. But renewed scrutiny arose after an April collective agreement in France granted 250,000 workers the protected right to not answer work email after 6 p.m.

Some initial reports suggested France had banned work email outright after 6 p.m., which is not the case. But, even so, that new protection is sparking debate about email etiquette, especially as work-life balance, mental health and burnout have become significant concerns.