RETURN TO WORK DURING THE CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC– NAVIGATING THROUGH THE EMPLOYMENT LAW MINEFIELD BY RAJIV BHATT (HARDWICKE) AND LAURA CONWAY (WEDLAKE BELL)
14 / 05 / 2020
- With the recent announcement that lockdown measures are to be eased, and those who cannot work from home should return to work, we are likely to see a greater proportion of the workplace slowly return to work. The Prime Minister has announced that those in construction and manufacturing, scientific research, logistics and food production should return to work, once their employers have confirmed that it is safe for them to do so and set a “road-map” for the re-opening of shops, restaurants and other venues as well as workplace specific guidance for working safely during coronavirus.
- Businesses that will continue to operate “from home” will be looking to these industries to pave the way. This new world comes with a minefield of employment law issues which employers should start to consider now to ensure a smooth transition in the return to work.
- At the same time, millions of employees have been furloughed. On 12 May 2020, it was reported that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (“CJRS“) will be extended in its current form to 31 July 2020 and then in an amended form until 31 October 2020. Employers are likely to be asked to share the cost of payments to their employees from August 2020, however employees will continue to receive the level of support currently available through the CJRS.
- We will address some of these issues and attempt to provide a safe passageway through the danger that lurks. We will say, at the outset, that cases are fact specific and legal advice should be sought.
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