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Temporary derogations from key employment laws in the healthcare and social welfare sector

Ministry of Social Affairs and Health 7.4.2020 7.02
Press release

The Ministry of Social Affairs and Health has issued instructions on which persons employed in the healthcare and social welfare sector may be subject to temporary derogations from the provisions of the Annual Holidays Act, the Working Hours Act and the Employment Contracts Act. The Government issued a decree on temporary derogations on 6 April 2020. The Decree is in force until 13 May 2020.

The introduction of these exceptional measures requires that such measures are necessary because of the coronavirus epidemic. The objective is to ensure that a sufficient number of personnel work in the healthcare and social welfare services during the virus epidemic, thereby ensuring that the functional capacity of these services matches the demands of coronavirus epidemic.

The instructions of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health contain a list of the healthcare and social welfare services and the related support services, whose employees may, if necessary, be subject to the derogations. They may be applied to employees working in both public and private healthcare and social welfare services.

The Ministry emphasises that these exceptional measures may not compromise the health and safety of employees at work. The employer must make sure that the workload is evenly distributed and that the employee has an opportunity to recover from the stress caused by work.

Instructions of the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health on temporary derogations from the application of certain provisions of the Annual Holidays Act, the Working Hours Act and the Employment Contracts Act to personnel working in health care and social services

Inquiries

Eila Mustonen, Ministerial Adviser
Marjukka Vallimies-Patomäki, Ministerial Adviser
Juha Luomala, Senior Ministerial Adviser