Anti-crisis regulations: propositions from the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies


Even though the impatiently anticipated changes to the Labour Code, supposed to limit its notorious rigidity, may not be adopted soon, the Ministry of Labour and Social Policies proposes another remedy for the difficulties on the Labour market.

For several months now the Ministry has been working on solutions supposed to save jobs and help the employers through the economical crisis. The draft of relevant Act was adopted by the Council of Ministers on 21st May 2013 for further work.

The new solutions shall be applicable to employers whose turnover has been dropping by at least 15% during 6 consecutive months during the last 12 months. Such employers will be able to introduce in their enterprise the economic work stoppage, understood as the period when the work is not performed by the employee due to economic reasons, unrelated to the employee. Another instrument to prevent liquidation of posts will be an option to reduce employee's working time and his/her remuneration accordingly. Such reduction cannot last longer than 6 months though. Both mentioned solutions will need to be consulted with the staff, but the opinion of the employees will not be a binding one.

The remuneration of the employees affected by the work stoppage or reduction of working time will be in part financed directly by the Guaranteed Employment Benefit Fund and shall be paid to the employer on the basis of a contract, concluded with the Marshall of the Voivodeship.

The public aid is supposed to cover the amount equal to the unemployment benefit (which is 794,20 złotys); also the State would provide the funds for social security premiums of the concerned employees. The employer shall have to cover the remaining difference between this sum and the minimum statutory wage (at present 1.600 złotys).

The demand for the financing won’t have to contain any attached documents, but it is going to be based merely on statements of the applicant. The entrepreneurs shall without doubt welcome such limitation of bureaucracy.

The employees do risk a considerable reduction of their remuneration, yet they are guaranteed not losing their jobs when the financing contract is in force. Also, the employer wishing to organize a training for the employees affected by taken measures, can ask for partial funding from the Starosta (or President of the City, even up to 80% of the costs).

The representatives of Employers ( Lewiatan, Business Center Club) seem to approve of the draft; Interestingly, equally satisfied are the trade unions. This seems like a good sign – given the continuing crisis, there are chances the project will actually be passed by the Parliament before it is no longer necessary.

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