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Different country rules for corona protection at work

According to possible coalition partners, a 3G rule could soon apply in the workplace. (Photo: Deliris / Shutterstock)

The possible coalition partners SPD, Greens and FDP are planning a 3G rule in the workplace. That would mean that employees would have to prove that they have either been vaccinated, recovered or tested negative for the coronavirus. The “traffic light” parties want to increase protection against infection in companies. However, a number of questions are still unanswered. In other European countries, these protective rules for the workplace have so far applied:

In Austria since 1 November Health authorities in the districts check compliance with the rules. The employer must randomly check employees to see whether they have been vaccinated, recovered or tested. Admission controls are not planned. If the 3G rule is violated, there is a risk of fines of up to 500 euros for employees and 3,600 euros for entrepreneurs. A transition period that still allowed an FFP2 mask ends in the middle of the month. It is also planned that 3G will then become 2.5G – then only PCR tests would be valid as evidence. There are currently long queues in front of test stations. Offers for PCR tests are to be expanded. Employers want flexibility: it would be nonsense to send people home if their test expires while on duty.

In Italy the “Green Passport” was extended to the world of work on October 15th. With the digital or printable document, people can prove that they have been vaccinated, tested or recovered. The 3G rule therefore applies to the workplace. To be able to go to the office, for example, employees have to show the document. Those who cannot do that are not allowed in. Companies that do not control the “Green Passport” face a fine, employees without a passport face loss of wages. Anyone who enters the workplace without a passport must expect a fine. The extension of the rule has led to protests.

At the neighbors Denmark there are no “G-rules” for the workplace. In fact, all corona restrictions were lifted there two months ago. Now, however, they are tightened again – using a corona passport, with which the Danes can show that they have been vaccinated, recovered or tested negative. This proof must be shown again from Friday in the restaurant, in the disco and at larger events. So far, this requirement has not existed at workplaces – but it could now also come. In the Netherlands there are currently no 2G or 3G rules in the job.

No national regulation in Switzerland

In Switzerland there are no national regulations for 3G or 2G in the workplace. Employers can, however, request a 3G certificate if this is the only way to enforce their protection concept. Tests are in principle voluntary, but “testing can be ordered for certain, particularly exposed groups of workers”, writes the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs. In this case, employers have to pay for testing costs, offer regular testing or other measures for people without a certificate, according to the employers’ association.

In France Health workers are required to be vaccinated. Employees who are in contact with the public are required to provide proof of vaccination, convalescence or test at all locations that can only be accessed with a health pass. The person responsible for the workplace / branch is responsible for the control. This does not necessarily have to be the employer – so if only one person works in a shop in a shopping center, then it is not the manager of the shop who is responsible, but the manager of the center. Anyone who cannot or does not want to show evidence must expect their contract to be terminated and at least for the time being cannot work.

High vaccination rates in Spain and Portugal

Spain has one of the highest vaccination rates and currently one of the lowest corona numbers. The seven-day incidence, with a slightly increasing tendency, is a good 30; almost 79 percent of the population are fully vaccinated. Almost all corona restrictions have therefore been lifted. There is no compulsory vaccination or test at the workplace. In most communities, which roughly correspond to the federal states in this country, a mask requirement applies at the workplace and the requirement to keep a distance of one and a half meters. But the conservative head of government of the Madrid region, Isabel Ayuso, has also lifted this requirement. Violations in the workplace against the mask requirement, the distance requirement or the requirement to use partition walls threaten high fines. However, these are rarely imposed.

Also Portugal is one of the countries in which a particularly large number of people have been vaccinated. More than 86 percent of the people here are fully vaccinated, the seven-day incidence is 76. There is no compulsory vaccination or test at the workplace. Whether a mask has to be worn is at the employer’s discretion. Fines for violating existing corona requirements are relatively low.

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Sandra Loyd
Sandra is the Reporter working for World Weekly News. She loves to learn about the latest news from all around the world and share it with our readers.

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