Cabinet Minister Gianfranco Rotondi ha criticised Italian workers for their habit of taking a lunch break. The Ministro per l’Attuazione del programma di governo criticised the habit of workers taking hour long lunch breaks and for ‘stopping all of Italy’. He cited Germany and Great Britain as examples to follow in their habit of taking short breaks or even no lunch break at all.
His comments werwe fiercely criticised by trade unions who said that he obviously has no experience of having to work 8 hours labour without a break.
The Minister later went back on his words saying that he himself had abolished the habit and only meant that workers should have the right whether to take a break or not.
The average lunch break for factory workers and most office workers in Italy is one hour while public sector workers do have the choice of whether to take a break or not, and if they do then it must be for a minimum of 20 minutes.