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German Labour Minister Hubertus Heil proposes 24 days a year to work remotely. New rules favour parents

The German Labour Minister, Hubertus Heil, wants to facilitate remote work for employees and guarantee them the right to it 24 days a year, informs Deutsche Welle .

In an interview with “Bild am Sonntag,” Hubertus Heil said the coronavirus pandemic showed that “mobile work is possible more than we thought.” The solution proposed by Heil would be particularly beneficial for working parents, as they could work from home one day a week

The German labour minister Hubertus Heil wants 24 days of remote work to be a specified minimum. This means that in collective labor contracts, by agreement of the parties, this number could be increased.

At least 24 days a year for working parents

If translated into everyday reality, the new regulations could make family life much easier for working parents. Working from home 24 days a year in practice means working remotely one day each week.

Important regulations for parents who want to apply for Children’s Allowance (Kinderzuschlag) in Germany

Opportunity to work from home “where possible”

As Deutsche Welle informs, the head of the labor ministry pointed to the limitations of this type of work: “Of course, a baker cannot bake rolls at home” – he said. “Therefore, the employer may reject an application for remote work if he has understandable organizational or company-related reasons for doing so.” The Act will no longer allow an employer to refuse to work from home in principle.

The proposal presented by the minister is widely commented on by trade unions and representatives of various parties. It is noted that although the idea seems to be good in principle, it carries the risk of bureaucratic chaos and the emergence of conflict situations between employees and employers. 

Among other things, the question of how to control home desks and the determination of security rules so that working from home does not become an overtime trap.

Source: Deutsche Welle