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Luxembourg makes the health pass mandatory to go to work

The health pass becomes compulsory, from Saturday January 15, to access your workplace in Luxembourg, in accordance with a law passed in December after the appearance of the Omicron variant. The obligation concerns both the public sector and private companies.

This measure, which aims to speed up vaccination against the coronavirus, was announced by the Prime Minister, Xavier Bettel, on November 29. The liberal leader pointed out a vaccination rate « Too low to avoid overloading hospitals », at a time when the information on the strong contagiousness of the Omicron raised fears again strong pressures on the care system.

In the Grand Duchy, 65% of the total population are fully vaccinated – a lower figure than in France or Belgium -, and 42% have received the « booster » or booster dose, according to official figures.

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The refractory employee must take leave

From Saturday, employees who do not telecommute will have to be able to present at work proof of a complete vaccination schedule, a recovery from Covid-19 or an antigen test of less than twenty-four hours (from forty – eight hours for PCRs).

An employee who does not present a health pass cannot however be dismissed, a guarantee obtained after consultation between the social partners and the executive, validated by a vote in Parliament on December 16. The employee refractory or unable to present a pass will have to go on leave or give up his salary when his leave is exhausted, specify the authorities.

The OGBL trade union confederation criticized « Social injustice » represented by the cost of the tests, which can amount to 600 to 700 euros per month. « For low or even middle-income employees, the CovidCheck creates a de facto vaccination obligation », denounced the organization.

The number of contaminations in Luxembourg, a small state of 630,000 inhabitants wedged between Germany, Belgium and France, has been steadily very high in recent weeks, with around 30% of positive tests in recent days. With twenty people in intensive care out of a total of sixty-nine Covid patients treated in hospital, the care system is not yet overcrowded.

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