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25 September 2020
India: the risks of a major labour market slump
As is the case in many other countries, the crisis in India sparked by the Covid-19 pandemic is not purely a health crisis but also an economic and social one. For the Indian economy, the loss of income caused by the nationwide lockdown declared on 24 March, which will last far longer than the three weeks...
23 September 2020
France: fathers to be entitled to 28 days paternity leave
On 23 September following  of the Council of Ministers meeting, President Macron announced paternity leave would be extended to ‘one month’. According Elysée Palace press information from 22 September paternity leave will be increased from 11 calendar days to 25 and compensated for by the social...
23 September 2020
Spain: decree-law reforming the legal framework for remote working now available
As announced, the decree-law on remote working (28/2020) was officially published on 23 September. This reform aims to provide a single regulation that strikes a balancebetween ‘on the one hand, the use of these new forms of employment provision and the benefits they bring to companies and workers, and on the other hand, a framework of rights that among other things manifests the principles of their voluntary and reversible nature, and of equal treatment in terms of; working conditions, and in particular with...
23 September 2020
Great Britain: PM Boris Johnson urges workers to recommence remote working
As coronavirus is once again threatening the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged employees to recommence working from home, as and when possible. The surprising reversal in government policy that just a few weeks ago was persuading workers back to their offices (c.f. article No.12108) is worrying not only companies but also human resources experts and trade unions who are calling for an extension of short-time working arrangements.
22 September 2020
Spain: the government presents its remote working reform
On 22 September, Spain’s government approved a decree-law on remote working, the major thrusts of which were negotiated with trade union and employers organizations. The text defines remote work and provides a framework for ways in which; businesses can make the means for remote working available, compensation can meet the related expenses incurred, and employees’ working activity can be managed. The text provides for a transition phase as it enters into legal force, so that companies which have already...
Remote work regulations
22 September 2020
France: employers ready to negotiate on remote working
On 22 September, Medef, France’s largest employers’ organization, announced it had agreed to open negotiations on remote working. Following six meetings with the social partners that sought to establish a joint diagnosis on the lessons to be learned from recent developments in remote working (c.f. article No.11989) the employers’ organization has finally agreed to a unanimously trade union organisation backed request to negotiate. There is “room for an agreement” the leader of the...
Remote work regulations
21 September 2020
Austria: government and social partners discuss directive on remote work
On Friday 18 September, Austria’s minister for labour Christine Aschbacher launched efforts to draw up a directive on remote working, which should be ready in March next year.  Social partners are closely involved in the process, which involves the establishment of several working groups on the topic. The need for such a directive has arisen due to the period of lockdown following the Covid-19 outbreak, during which the proportion people working remotely – or teleworking – temporarily increased from 10% to...
Remote work regulations
21 September 2020
United Kingdom: gender-fluid and non-binary employees protected by anti-discrimination law (judgment)
The decision – labelled significant by LGBT+ associations – was made by an employment tribunal that ruled in favour of an employee of Jaguar Land Rover, who had worked at the automotive group for 20 years. The person, who decided to identify as gender-fluid in 2017, brought a complaint against her employer for harassment and discrimination, having been subjected to mockery by colleagues when she came to work wearing a dress. After receiving no support from the company’s management on the issue of toilet...
17 September 2020
Denmark: a tripartite agreement to revise the short-time work system
The 31 August 2020 agreement marks the completion of a process of reflection that commenced in March, during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic, and that focused on revising the short-time working system. Context related adjustment is thus giving way to a more structural revision that offers more flexibility in terms of arrangements for reduced activity and also broadens the benefits.
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
17 September 2020
Germany: short-time working scheme is extended until the end of 2021 (updated with details on social security contribution cover for those on short-time working)
On 16 September Germany’s Federal Council of Ministers (Bundeskabinett) passed the ‘Law on job security in light of the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic” (Gesetz zur Beschäftigungssicherung), which will extend the length of time companies and employees can benefit from the short-time work scheme, ‘adapted to the Covid-19 period’. Two related decrees were also...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
16 September 2020
Italy: after the health related state of emergency period, changes are in sight for smart working
Italy’s Labor Minister Nunzia Catalfo has convened a meeting with the social partners during the week 21 September  to reflect on a reform to Law 81 of 2017 (that establishes smart working), in order to make some necessary adjustments in light of the post-Covid context.  Rethinking smart working is all the more urgent since the end of the health related state of emergency, set for 15 October will sound the death knell for the exceptional measures that were taken during the country’s lockdown period to...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
15 September 2020
France: coronavirus recognized as an occupational illness
On 15 September a decree published in the Official Journal (here) opened a small door for workers who have worked in establishments particularly exposed to the risk of Covid-19 contamination and solely for the most severe forms of the virus. Indeed, this decree provides for the automatic official recognition of SARS-CoV2 as an occupational disease for all caregivers, and maintenance and administrative staff who have worked in the field of healthcare or medical-social institutions and who have suffered from acute...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19