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Managing the fallout of Covid-19

You will find here all the Planet Labor articles covering the initiatives of public authorities and social partners as they seek to manage the economic and social repercussions of the coronavirus outbreak.

5 September 2022
China: combatting discrimination against those who have contracted and recovered from Covid affirmed as an official priority
On 29 July,  China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security and the National Health Commission issued an ‘urgent’ directive aimed at ‘resolutely’ combating employment discrimination against those who have recovered from Covid-19. Indeed, given that even slightest sign of a positive Covid test can result in all business activities ceasing, many employers appear to have developing their own workplace-based zero tolerance illness policies which is translating into a form of  punitive...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
30 August 2022
Austria: new Covid-19 regulation in effect as of 1 August 2022
A second directive, which came into force on 1 August and is valid until 23 October 2022 inclusive, relaxes the basic regulations implemented in Austria to tackle Covid-19. The directive adopts a straightforward rationale: measures are only taken where absolutely necessary from an epidemiological point of view. In the world of work, apart from specific measures negotiated or decreed at company level, the general rules are as follows: wearing a mask is no longer compulsory, while those who test positive for the...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
8 July 2022
Italy: new Covid-19 protocol in the workplace
On 30 June, as the seventh wave of Covid-19 sweeps through the country, Italy’s government and social partners signed a new Covid-19 workplace protocol, which simplifies the previous regulations, but does not completely lift the restrictive measures. In particular, any worker presenting Covid-19 symptoms must not come to the workplace, or if at the workplace must leave it. Temperature taking at the workplace entrance, a measure widely applied in Italy during the whole pandemic period, continues to be authorized....
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
6 July 2022
Argentina: the government is not renewing double job-severance pay
Argentina’s centre-left ruling government (centre-left) has confirmed it is the definitive end for the ‘double indemnity’ provision that was in place for employment dismissals and which expired on 30 June 2022. The measure dates from 13 December 2019 and was taken amid an economic recession with the aim of curbing employment layoffs. To this end, it provided that in the event of ‘unfair’ dismissals workers should receive twice the amount of compensation to which s/he was entitled.
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
28 June 2022
Luxembourg: Covid-19 related social security regulations for cross-border teleworking extended to 31-Dec-2022
On 24 June, a week before the series of exceptional telework agreements in terms of Luxembourg social security affiliation were due to come to an end on 30 June (c.f. article No. 13108), Luxembourg’s Ministry of Social Security announced that the ‘exceptional provision’ excluding Covid-19 related telework days in social security calculations for cross-border workers  is to be extended until 31 December 2022. The members of the Administrative Commission for the Coordination of Social Security Systems in the...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
22 June 2022
Great Britain: first court recognition of long COVID as a disability
This unprecedented decision by a Scottish employment tribunal, following an unfair dismissal claim lodged by an employee, is something companies should keep an eye on, not least since until this point the government had been recommending employers not to consider long Covid as a disability and instead to operate on a case-by-case basis.  With this latest employment tribunal decision, the complainant employee will be able to progress his claim and sue his employer for wrongful dismissal.
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
12 May 2022
Great Britain: employers recommended not to consider long Covid as a disability
On 09 May, the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)*, released an update of its recommendations in which it says that employers should not have to recognise ‘long Covid’ as a disability. As a result, employees living with ‘long Covid’ cannot make recourse to the Equality Act 2010, which protects employees from all forms of discrimination. ‘Discussions continue on whether ‘long Covid’ symptoms constitute a disability. Without case law or scientific consensus, EHRC does not recommend that...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
30 March 2022
Italy: state of health emergency to end on 31 March
The Italian government has decided to gradually lift its anti-Covid measures. The health pass at work, which has been compulsory since 15 October 2021 (c.f. article No.12685), will remain in force until 30 April 2022, as will the wearing of masks in the workplace. While the requirement for those over 50 years of age to be vaccinated does remain in place in theory until 15 June 2022 (breach of which is liable to €100 fine), in practices as of 25 March this age cohort age (c.f. article No.12853) can access the...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
17 March 2022
Germany: Covid-related restrictions on companies to be lifted from 20 March
On Friday 18 March, the Bundestag will vote on an amendment to the Infection Protection Act, which will formalise the rules for lifting many of the protective measures against Covid-19, planned for 20 March. The decision to lift these measures came at the start of the month, at a conference that brought together representatives of Germany’s federal government and the Länder.
Managing the fallout of Covid-19
17 March 2022
Brazil: government sends pregnant women back to work
The working conditions for pregnant women have been overhauled by Law 14.311, which was passed by Brazil’s chamber of deputies in February before being validated by President Jair Bolsonaro, of the far-right Liberal Party, on 10 March. Since May last year, pregnant women in Brazil have been entitled to keep their salary, even if their work cannot be done remotely. However, if this law is validated by the Senate, they will have to return to work and adhere to social distancing guidelines to protect themselves...
Managing the fallout of Covid-19