Shifts – Day, Swing and Graveyard

Most people work a day shift, don’t you think? Most businesses are open during the day, closed at night, right?

But what about “Swing Shift”? That’s usually considered to mean the hours from around 4 p.m. until midnight. In fact, it may have come about in America because of the employees in the aircraft factories and such going out to dance the swing during World War II. Or maybe the shifts were called “swing shifts” because they seemed to “swing” between the established day and night shifts. (By the way, for what it’s worth, there are at least two swing dances, the one known by most as “swing” and also the West Coast Swing – danced in tandem rows).

Then there’s the Graveyard Shift. It’s also said to be called the Graveyard Watch. This term was reputed to have been coined for those work shifts that started midnight and maybe ran until 8:00 a.m., over a hundred years ago.

Have you – do you – work either of those two shifts? If the shifts are of 3 equal 8-hour durations, but you have to start a few minutes before any shift, or work a few minutes after that shift, are you getting paid for that extra time worked? You should be.

If you’re not, maybe there’s something you could do about it. Maybe you should call an attorney.

Feel free to call me at 626-795-0205 or email me at

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