Parents and businesses are experiencing additional stress due to school closures, according to a tour of the trade union FNV. Schools are closed a week earlier than planned due to the new omikron variant, but emergency care is not available to everyone. Parents who have to work but don’t have a crucial career are desperately looking for babysitting or other solutions.
The responses of about 1,500 respondents show that about half of the employers did not take additional measures to support parents during the Christmas holidays. In about a quarter, the employee does not know if this is the case.
The most common solutions are that the employee does not have to work a full working day, that work compensation agreements have been made at a later date, additional time off is granted, and the employer has offered a babysitter.
‘The work must go on’
Barbara Bellard, business manager for advertising agency 180 Amsterdam, chose the latter. Many of the 120 employees have school-age children. “Panic settled for a while, when it was said at Tuesday’s press conference that schools would be closing early. So last minuteAnd Then people have a problem.”
Billard himself is recording ads this week. “Then I’ll be away from home for two whole days. Grandma’s call is also not wise at the moment.”
The advertising agency now lends a helping hand to employees: it uses the babysitting service and pays additional expenses. Billard thinks that’s cool: “I—and many others—definitely use it.”
Such solutions are also in the best interest of employers, Bellard says. “The work must go on. Staff cannot be missed at this busy time. Commercials must be completed. For example, customers have already bought television airtime. If we do not finish our work on time, it also costs a lot of money.”
Not all employers think all the time.
But not all employers are willing and cooperative, says FNV. Vice President Kitty Jung: “We don’t hear a lot of positive reports about that. Often the employers that are trying to put things in order are companies where many employees have already been able to work from home and already have a good relationship with employees.”
Jong is particularly interested in people who have a cashless career, but still have to go to work. According to her, there are employers who say: “Look, you want children, you solve the problem yourself.” I heard it too, but thirty years ago. unbelievable “.
“Enter a conversation”
The union invites companies to enter into discussions with employees: “Ask if something needs to be done. Go and find a solution. If additional expenses are incurred, try to get them back from the government with us.”
The outgoing government hopes that employers will be flexible in finding a solution.
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