25 Mar 2020

Employees can not be forced to take leave - authorities

3:53 pm on 25 March 2020

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Businesses can not force employees to take annual leave during the isolation period, authorities say.

The Council of Trade Unions (CTU) has accused some employers of bad behaviour in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.

Richard Wagstaff

Richard Wagstaff Photo: supplied

One of the complaints is that employers are compelling staff to use sick leave or annual leave to cover the Level 4 isolation period that begins at midnight Wednesday 25 March.

"Working people expect to be treated fairly at all times and especially in times of crisis. Some employers are behaving badly, others are quite frankly behaving unlawfully, CTU President, Richard Wagstaff said in a media statement.

The Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) said people must take sick leave if they are sick and can not work, but employees could not be forced to take annual leave during the isolation period.

There is a government wage subsidy currently in force for affected businesses and employees.

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