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23 April 2020
Mexico: employers’ confederation calls on the State to cover part of salary outlays in a bid to avoid redundancies
Mexico’s employers confederation body, Coparmex, is  seeking the establishment of a ‘solidarity salary’ for Mexican workers that are being hard hit by the Covid-19 related economic paralysis. This ‘solidarity salary,’ which would be less than or equal to the employee’s monthly amount, would be paid jointly by companies and the federal government.  As a result of the new salary arrangements and except for those paid up to 3 times the minimum wage (MXN 123, €4.6 per day), who will continue to...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
23 April 2020
Poland: the anti-crisis emergency law is overlooking temporary workers
According to Polskie Forum HR, the professional umbrella organization for temporary employment companies, more than 75,000 temporary workers risk losing their jobs. The emergency ‘Crisis Shield’ law (c.f. article No. 11798) has de facto excluded temporary agency workers from its scope. Companies using temporary workers are eligible for State aid, but only as concerns their own direct employees. In practice, temporary employment agencies cannot demonstrate a cessation of business activity, as it is defined in...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
22 April 2020
Denmark: financial sector agreement giving more flexibility to companies and employees to resume activity
On 17 April, the Financial Sector Employers’ Association (FA) and the Finansforbundet trade union reached an agreement that sets a framework for the gradual reopening of workplaces in the sector. Valid until 31 May, the agreement suspends those articles of the industry’s collective agreement that lay down strict rules on working hours and working time. As a result, employees will, with the employer’s agreement, be able to work at home every day. Employers may require work to be done outside...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
22 April 2020
France: banking sector social partners issue a joint declaration on employee and customer safety
Not an agreement, and nor a protocol at branch level, but instead a joint declaration signed on 20 April by the French Banking Federation (FFB) and the main banking sector unions namely, the SNB-CGC, SNE-CGC (savings banks) and CFDT Banques, which refers to ‘preventive measures (Ed. note- rules for access to branch offices, teleworking, etc.) implemented by the banking profession so that all employees and customers, can recognize and benefit from a common organizational and safety framework, which is essential...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
22 April 2020
Italy: social partners in Brescia, one of the Covid-19 epicenters, sign an agreement to ensure industry worker safety
In Lombardy’s industrial heartland lies the city of Brescia, which along with its surroundings and Bergamo, became one of Italy’s hardest hit Covid-19 areas. Formulated under the auspices of the Prefecture of Brescia, the protocol signed on 14 April by the employers’ body, the Associazione Industriale Bresciana (AIB) and the local branches of the Cgil, Cisl and Uil trade unions includes not only rules and procedures to guarantee the health and safety of workers, but also a more specifically...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
22 April 2020
Great Britain: coronavirus boom in trade union membership.
On 20 April, one of the UK’s largest trade unions, Unison (public sector), released a statement showing a record number of people seeking to take out membership. Since the start of 2020 almost 16,000 workers have applied for membership and Unison has noted ‘record numbers signing up in the last few weeks,’ or more specifically in March and at the start of April when the Covid-19 pandemic really started to take a hold of the UK. Unison general secretary Dave Prentis commented, “People are joining the union...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
21 April 2020
Italy: fashion industry gears up to re-open
On 15 April a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the social partners that enables the re-opening of the fashion industry, a fundamental ‘Made in Italy’ pillar, while guaranteeing workers’ safety. Although the catalogue of preventive and protective measures to combat coronavirus is not particularly original in content, the social partners have been innovative in giving consultation an ongoing role at both national and company level.
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
21 April 2020
Spain: agreement between electricity companies and the government to cushion the impact of coal-fired plant closures
On 17 April, the electricity companies Endesa, Iberdrola and Naturgy together with the Ministries of Labour and Ecological Transition, as well as the trade unions CCOO and UGT secured an agreement for a just transition. It sets the framework for the conclusion of specific agreements to be drawn up in each affected region, which will attempt to cushion the impact of coal-fired power plant closures and help find solutions for each region. The parties thus undertake to collaborate on providing specific support for...
20 April 2020
Spain: PSA plant in Vigo to resume production at low capacity and set up a new partial unemployment scheme to run until year end
The Vigo plant of French automobile group PSA is preparing to resume activity from 27 April , following a six-week lockdown in Spain after the state of alert decree issued on 15 March. However, this return to work should be gradual and at low capacity, since order volumes are expected to be diminished. This new business landscape has prompted management to present a temporary job reduction plan (ERTE) to the works council, justified for organisational and production reasons. The plan guarantees 80% of gross salary...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
20 April 2020
Belgium: social partners in construction sector pen agreement to re-open sites with social distancing measures applied
On Thursday 16 April, after a month of negotiations, the social partners in Belgium’s construction industry agreed to resume work on sites while respecting as far as possible the rules of social distancing, to prevent the spread of coronavirus. According to the construction confederation, workers will have the right to “respond positively or negatively” to their employer’s request when work has to be carried out in a building “in which one or more cases of coronavirus have been detected” or if the...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19