The Corona-COVID 19 virus outbreaks are now worldwide; in the Netherlands, too, the first Corona cases are a fact. For you as an employer, it is important to carefully think what you are expected to do.
Dutch law expects employers to provide a safe working environment. This means that employers must inform and instruct their employees about working in a safe and healthy manner. For the most recent updates you should, therefore, always check the website of the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) (www.rivm.nl), the GGD or your company doctor.
According to the RIVM there is no need yet to take special measures at work. The RIVM states that the most important measures to take to prevent spreading the coronavirus are the same as for preventing the spreading of viruses that cause the flue or a cold. These are:
We advise employers to make their employees aware of these guidelines and to ensure that disinfecting soap is available in the sanitary facilities in the workplace. If employees work in an environment where they run a risk of infection, employers must provide protective material for the employees. The RIVM recommends the use of mouth caps for medical personnel only.
Other facts you should take into consideration as an employer:
In the meantime, the Dutch government has answered some frequently asked questions about the implications of the Coronavirus for employers and employees. Please see: https://www.rijksoverheid.nl/onderwerpen/coronavirus-covid-19/veelgestelde-vragen-over-coronavirus-voor-werkgevers-en-werknemers (in Dutch only).
The above provides a general and non-exhaustive overview and is based on the information published by the RIVM. For the most recent updates, please always check the websites of the RIVM, the Dutch Government, the GGD or your company doctor.
If we can be of any help or if you have any questions in relation to the above, please contact Suzan van de Kam or one of our other employment law specialists.
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