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29 May 2020
Spain: minimum income scheme to launch
Today, on 29 May, the Spanish government urgently approved a decree to create a guaranteed minimum income scheme that will come into force from June. The measure has been introduced to lighten the burden for 850,000 low-income households across the country and will consist of a monthly payment of at least €462 per month for an individual person. The...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
29 May 2020
China: employment at heart of government’s priorities
At the closing of the double session of parliament on 28 May, and after delegates of the National People’s Congress, the Chinese Parliament, almost unanimously approved the government’s progress report, premier Li Keqiang said that measures to safeguard employment, ensure decent living conditions and restart businesses should help to restore growth and stabilise fundamentals in 2020-21. He stressed that “employment is the most important thing in people’s lives” and that 70% of state subsidies...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
29 May 2020
United Kingdom: immediate sick pay for employees told to self-isolate under new coronavirus test and trace system
Under the UK’s new ‘test and trace’ system to combat the spread of coronavirus, any person who has been in contact with someone infected with the virus or someone suspected of being so must immediately go into self-isolation. With this new approach in place, the government has amended its law on sick pay, specifying that from 28 May, employees asked by the test and trace service to isolate themselves will receive Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) – which now amounts to £95.85/week (€106.61) – straight...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
28 May 2020
Colombia: a proposed law on the right to disconnect in the wake of the coronavirus crisis
A bill on the right to digital disconnection and respect for the boundaries between work and personal life was tabled this week in Colombia’s House of Representatives. The legislation provides that every company, regardless of size, must implement a policy on disconnection, ‘in agreement with the workers,’ which must define how this right is to be exercised and guaranteed, and provide for a digital disconnection protocol regarding ICT use in the workplace that respects working time | rest time boundaries,...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
27 May 2020
EU: the European Commission presents a €750 billion recovery plan
On 26 May, European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen presented its €750 billion recovery instrument called NextGeneration EU. The aim is to support the EU Members States as they try to manage the crisis and to promote investments in line with European priorities of climate neutrality, faster digitalization of economies, and social cohesion, by relying in large part on the inter-EU Member State transfer mechanisms that are central to the European model. Finance is to come from European debt issuance...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
27 May 2020
EU: EU Commission Work Programme confirms a directive on minimum wages and another on pay transparency will be adopted before the end of 2020
On 27 May, and in addition to its recovery plan (c.f. article No. 11962), the European Commission adopted its 2020 Work Programme (here) which, as announced on several occasions, intends for the presentation of a legislative initiative on minimum wages by the end of the year (c.f. article No. 11693) that should put in place mechanisms, which ensure that all EU Member States guarantee a...
27 May 2020
Germany: CGB (Christian Trade Union) member, the DHV not authorized to negotiate collective agreements
On 22 May, the Hamburg regional court (LAG Hamburg) ruled that the DHV (Der Berufsgewerkschaft), which is a member of the small German Confederation of Christian Trade Unions (CGB), did not have the right to negotiate collective agreements because of its weak presence and lack of representativeness in the sectors in which it negotiated agreements. The ruling applies to all agreements concluded by the DHV union since the same court’s 2016 decision that had authorized it to negotiate. The DHV claims it has 73,000...
27 May 2020
Argentina: government adds conditions to salary subsidy arrangements
Argentina’s government has decided to place restrictions on the Assistance for Work and Production (ATP) program, one of the main instruments helping companies and workers during the Covid-19 lockdown and pandemic (c.f. article No. 11864). Profiling of businesses from April’s first round of ATP applications has enabled the identification of those benefiting from the program’s measures and these freshly added conditions (ban of dividends paiement or to  invest in USD dollars via the stock market etc..) are...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
27 May 2020
Mexico: State of Puebla goes against Federal Government advice and puts the brake on restarting the automobile industry
In contrast with a recent Federal government protocol that has authorized the gradual resumption of business for ‘essential’ economic activities, since 18 May, both the automobile and constructions sectors have officially been put ‘on hold’. In a decree published on 22 May, the governor of the State of Puebla, Luis Miguel Barbosa (Morena, Presidential Party), believes that business resumption in the automobile and construction industries which employ almost 160,000 people, would entail “an...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
26 May 2020
Austria: ‘Covid 19 short-time working’ arrangements extended alongside other measures to facilitate the gradual resumption of business
On 25 May Austria’s  Ministry of Employment and Social Affairs (Sozialministerium) approved a compromise negotiated between the Austrian Economic Chamber (WKÖ) and the Austrian Trade Union Federation (ÖGB). The agreement provides for a three-month extension for short-time working arrangements, the possibility for companies to increase working time without needing to alter their...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
26 May 2020
France: on 01 June State financial cover for partial activity will fall from 70% to 60% of gross salary
“As of 01 June, the conditions for taking over the partial activity allowance will be revised”, confirmed the Ministry of Labor, in information sent to the press on 25 May. Even if ‘compensation paid to the employee remains unchanged’ (70% of gross salary, i.e. 84% of net salary and at least the net minimum wage), the level covered by the State and the unemployment agency will be lowered so that companies will now be reimbursed up to 60% of gross salary, capped at 4.5x minimum wage, instead of 70%....
Managing the fallout of Covid-19