Maltese workers are the luckiest in Europe when it comes to holidays.
Malta is the country with the most days off in the European Union, with 14 public holidays a year, including Freedom Day in March, Independence Day in September and Republic Day in December.
As well as lots of holidays, full-time Maltese workers are entitled to 192 hours of paid annual leave, meaning a period of four weeks and four days.
Leave starts accumulating from commencement of employment, and can be taken in hours or as full days, depending on the agreement between employer and employee.
Since the 1970s, employees in the Maltese Islands have enjoyed an array of rights.
From the right to be offered fair job conditions, to being protected from various forms of discrimination, Maltese law tries to cater for every possibility.
By law, Maltese workers cannot work more than 48 hours a week, excluding overtime. The period can increase with the employee’s written consent, and only if the additional hours still fall within the rest periods established by law.
Workers are also entitled to a minimum of 15 minutes of rest during a work day which lasts more than six hours. The right of all Maltese citizens to have a job is even enshrined in the country’s Constitution.
To celebrate the efforts made by Maltese workers, a statue was erected by the General Workers’ Union in 1980.
The Workers’ Memorial in Msida has become an iconic Maltese landmark over the years, and a symbol of Malta’s regeneration following the horror of the Second World War.
The monument was designed by celebrated sculptor Anton Agius, who was also responsible for the Freedom Monument in Vittoriosa in 1979.