Employment Flash No. 12/2021 – Latest news in the labor law field

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27.10.2021 – Regarding the amendments to the Government Decision on extending the state of alert within Romanian territory and the obligation to wear a protective mask and perform the epidemiological triage.

Regarding the amendments to the Government Decision on extending the state of alert within Romanian territory

Romanian Government Decision no. 1130/22.10.2021 for the amendment of annexes no. 2 and 3 to the Government Decision no. 1090/2021 implementing the extension of the state of alert within Romanian territory was published in the Official Gazette no. 1013 of October 22, 2021. In addition, Government Decision no. 1161/25.10.2021, amending the same normative act, was published in the Official Gazette no. 1017 of October 25, 2021.

As per the new legal provision, employers order organization of work from domicile or in a teleworking regime, for at least 50% of employees, where the specifics of the activity so allow, under the conditions of art. 108—110 of the Labor Code and in compliance with the provisions of Law no. 81/2018 on teleworking.

The Government Decision provides that in the situation where the employee cannot perform telework or work from domicile, in order to avoid the congestion of public transport, employers with more than 50 employees have the obligation to organize the working schedule so that the staff is divided into groups / exchanges / shifts that start or end the activity at a difference of at least one hour, in strict compliance with health protection measures.

The legal provision that establishes the way of organizing the activity at the working place has remained in force, setting forth that this will be performed in compliance with the legal provisions issued by the competent authorities with regard to prevention of SARS-CoV-2 infection and to ensure the health and safety at work of the employees, taking into account the degree of vaccination of employees at that workplace, certified by a certificate of vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 virus presented by employees for whom 10 days have elapsed since the completion of the complete vaccination scheme, as well as the number of employees who are in the period between the 15th and the 180th day after the confirmation of the SARS-CoV-2 virus infection and who hold and present to the employer a certificate issued by the family doctor.

As a novelty, in the case of economic entities operating in buildings with private offices in which at least 50 people work simultaneously, it is established that access of persons, except for employees, is permitted only to those who prove vaccination against SARS-CoV- 2 and for whom 10 days have elapsed since the completion of the complete vaccination scheme, which present the negative result of an RT-PCR test for SARS-CoV-2 virus infection issued no more than 72 hours before or the negative result of an antigen test for SARS-CoV-2 virus infection issued no more than 48 hours before, or that are between the 15th and 180th day after confirmation of SARS-CoV-2 infection.

Regarding the obligation to wear a protective mask and perform the epidemiological triage

The Order of Health (interim) and Internal Affairs Ministers no. 2282/156/2021 imposing the obligation to wear the protective mask, perform the epidemiological triage and disinfection of hands to prevent contamination with SARS-CoV-2 virus, during the state of alert was published in the Official Gazette no. 1017 from October 25, 2021.

The said order establishes the obligation to wear a protective mask so as to cover the nose and mouth, in all closed and open public spaces, as well as at work and in public transport, with only a limited number of exceptions, respectively for ( i) children under the age of 5, (ii) persons who are alone in the office at work, (iii) TV presenters and their guests, provided that the distance of 3 meters between persons is observed, (iv) representatives of religious cults, during services, provided that the distance of 3 meters between persons is observed and (v) persons engaged in intense physical activities and / or in demanding working conditions (high temperatures, high humidity, etc.) or sports activities.

Thus, a number of previous exceptions to wearing the mask have been eliminated, such as the exemption to the rule of wearing the mask by vaccinated employees, if they work in an office only with other maximum 9 vaccinated employees.

As regards epidemiological triage at the entrance to the premises, as well as hand disinfection, they remain mandatory even under the new legal framework, the measures being essentially similar to the previous ones.

The Romanian version of this newsletter is available here.

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