Amendment to the new Working Hours Act
A proposal has been made to add a new section to the Working Hours Act. This section provides for the right of an employee performing work at night to a commuter service organised by the employer. The amendment is scheduled to enter into force at the beginning of 2020; the same time as the new Working Hours Act.
According to the government proposal, the employer must organise commuter transport for employees performing work at night if no public transport with a reasonable route or timetable is available at the time the employee’s shift begins or ends, and the employee does not have a car or comparable means of transport at their disposal for the commute. Furthermore, such a commute must require transport, and the employee’s commute must be customary in the local area.
However, the employer has no obligation to organise commuter transport in cases where a driving ban imposed on the employee prohibits the use of their own car.
Commuter transport may be provided as a pooled transport service or by reimbursing individual employees’ taxi fares. The employer is entitled to charge the employee a sum equivalent to the public transport fare for the journey organised by the employee.
The employer is required to consult with employees before making a decision on the commuter service. To take account of sectoral needs, national employer organisations and employee trade unions will be provided with an opportunity to continue to deviate from this provision in their collective agreements.
The content of the provision, which is proposed to be added to the Working Hours Act, is in line with the Government Decision issued pursuant to the current Working Hours Act, which will be repealed once the new Working Hours Act enters into force.
Tarja Kröger, Senior Ministerial Adviser, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 295 048 937