A new Australian law includes a “right to disconnect” that would give employees the right to seek an order from the government barring their employers from requiring them to respond to emails or phone calls outside of working hours. For the moment, it also provides for penalties that could include jail time.
The Fair Work Legislation Amendment (also known as the Closing Loopholes No. 2 Bill), secured passage in both houses of Australia’s legislature on Monday. It leaves open the potential for criminal penalties after legislative back-and-forth between the Liberal and Labor parties. The latter, who run the government, have vowed to change the legislation, which does not take effect for six months.