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Coronavirus / COVID-19 crisis: Histadrut and the government have agreed on paid leave for workers in the public sector

Workers will return after Passover | Arnon Bar David: "This is an example of the national responsibility and solidarity shown by workers" | Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation: "An excellent reaction to a traumatic situation"

Arnon Bar David, Histadrut Chairman (Photograph: Histadrut press office)
Arnon Bar David, Histadrut Chairman (Photograph: Histadrut press office)
By Davar

Histadrut Chairman Arnon Bar-David and the Treasury Wage Commissioner, Kobi Bar-Natan, will sign a collective agreement that will regulate the employment of public sector workers during the national emergency period.

The agreement stipulates that a non-essential designated employee that is not required to work during the crisis period, will take a mandatory vacation at the expense of the workers' accumulated vacation days. During Passover, the customary public service vacation conditions will apply. Employers in the public sector and the Histadrut will set up a joint vacation days fund for emergencies, which will work to prevent damages to workers' wages that do not have the sufficient accumulated vacation time.

The chairman of the Histadrut, Arnon Bar-David, said: "The agreement in a time of emergency is an example of national responsibility and social solidarity that workers demonstrate. Public sector workers, who, as a matter of course, devote their lives to serving Israeli citizens, are taking responsibility again. This agreement takes into account the constraints of the time and establishes a fair solution, both for the workers and the state as an employer. It is important to remember that the COVID-19 is not only an issue of public health but an emergency that shakes the global economy. Our mission is to ensure that the State of Israel endures the crisis peacefully and that the economy returns to its strength. I thank the Wage Commissioner for the cooperation and strengthen the hands of all workers in Israel. Together we will withstand this crisis. "

Treasury Commissioner Kobi Bar Natan: "The COVID-19 crisis presents many challenges to the economy, and public sector workers are also required to contribute. Before our eyes was the need to maintain the Ministry of Health's guidelines and at the same time, maintain stability for the employees during this period. I want to thank the chairman of the Histadrut, who has shown leadership and responsibility during this challenging time."

The agreement received compliments from other international unions. Sharan Burrow, International Trade Union Confederation General Secretary called it an "Excellent response to traumatic situation".

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