The Midweek Sun

Man Loses Job for Taking 6-Hour Toilet Breaks at Work


A Chinese man was fired by his employer for spending too much time in the toilet during work hours. The man reportedly took bathroom breaks of between 47 minutes and 6 hours.

Chinese news media recently reported the bizarre case of an employee surnamed Wang who sued his employer for wrongful terminatio­n after being fired for spending too much time in the toilet during work hours.

After undergoing surgery for an anorectal issue, the man continued experienci­ng pain and discomfort, so he started spending three to six hours in the toilet every day. Wang’s former employer claims that during a period of 10 days, he took a total of 22 bathroom breaks, which lasted between 47 minutes and 6 hours. Citing provisions in the staff handbook relating to tardiness, leaving work early, and authorized absences, the unnamed company from Tianjin terminated Wang’s employment.

Wang suffered the surgery in December 2014, and his employer claims that he started taking unusually long bathroom breaks after returning to work in July 2015, sometimes spending several hours in the office toilet. After having Wang monitored between September 7 and September 17, 2015, during which time he took at least 3 long bathroom breaks per day, the company decided to terminate his employment.

In October 2015, Mr. Wang sought arbitratio­n to have his position with the company reinstated, and the two parties engaged in a lengthy legal battle that ended this year, when the Tianjin high court ruled that the man’s bathroom breaks were not within “reasonable and normal physiologi­cal needs.” Wang did not get his job back.

This story got a mix of responses online, with some people defending the employee for having a serious medical condition, and others claiming that his breaks were justified because of his surgery.

“In the toilet for three, four hours? Was he sleeping in there?” one person wrote on Weibo.

“So how many hours are you actually working?” someone else wrote.

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