Since 2018 companies have had an obligation to guarantee employees' right to disconnect – that is, disengage from work-related electronic communications – in order to ensure that employees take daily and weekly rest periods and their annual leave. The Madrid High Court of Justice recently clarified that employees' right to disconnect does not prevent employers from requesting employees to provide services outside their usual working hours.
Although there have been some improvements for female employees in the labour market, the gender pay gap still persists in Spain. Thus, Spain recently passed two new laws which include several provisions that aim to guarantee equal pay between men and women, as well as a more detailed regulation regarding equality plans which are already in place.
The health crisis triggered by COVID-19 has accelerated the already existing trend of facilitating and implementing remote working policies in Spain. However, forced remote working as a result of the pandemic has emphasised the lack of regulation in this area, not to mention the practical issues previously left unresolved. Published on 23 September 2020, Royal Decree-Law 28/2020 on remote working seeks to provide clearer guidelines in this regard.
In order to illustrate the current status of the COVID-19 extraordinary measures following the lifting of the state of emergency on 21 June 2020, this article summarises the key employment-related measures adopted since the state of emergency was declared and the updated regulation of each measure following the numerous amendments introduced subsequent to Royal Decree-Law 8/2020.
The government has adopted several extraordinary employment-related measures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Moreover, since a state of emergency was declared, Spain's employment authorities have published countless guidelines and instructions relating to the practical application of such measures. This article summarises the key employment-related measures adopted since the state of emergency declaration.
There has been a wave of criticism that the mandatory recording of employees' working hours has hindered the flexibility measures which companies were beginning to introduce. As such, it is somewhat surprising that a recent amendment to the Workers' Statute appears to have flown under the radar, especially given that it aims to boost flexibility in order to uphold employees' rights to a work-life balance.
The Royal Decree-Law on Urgent Measures to Guarantee Equal Treatment and Opportunities for Women and Men in Employment and Occupation recently came into force, amending the Workers Statute and the Equality Law. The decree-law, which applies to companies established in Spain, aims to improve gender equality between women and men, reinforce equal pay and enable parents to share childcare responsibilities.