The Spanish Government approved this Sunday the suspension for two weeks of non-essential productive activities within a tightening of restrictions to stop the expansion of the coronavirus.
“Confinement measures are reducing the spread of the virus, but we must go one step further,” said the minister, spokesperson and head of the Treasury, María Jesús Montero, announcing the decision at a press conference at the end of a special session of the Spanish Executive. .
The new break will take the form of a retrievable paid leave from tomorrow, Monday, March 30, until April 9.
This means that the affected employees will not work but will receive their wages, although later they will work overtime to compensate their companies under the conditions agreed upon with the unions.
This measure does not affect employees who work from home during the current confinement, which began on the 15th and will continue until April 11, nor does it affect those who are ill or those affected by temporary job suspensions.
Montero explained the measure as “necessary” to reduce the mobility of the population as much as possible, because “it is essential to reduce the number of new infected”
He argued that it is necessary to take “one more step” so that more workers stay at home during the following two weeks and be able to guarantee that everyone who needs it has adequate and sufficient health care, since intensive care units are already at the limit capacity in six of the 17 Spanish regions.
The Minister of Finance also pointed out that the economy is “going into hibernation” so that when the worst of the pandemic is over, all our assets can be “recovered.”
The Labor Minister, Yolanda Díaz, considered that this recoverable paid leave is a new formula in which “everyone gives in”, both companies and workers, who will have to make up the time not worked before December 31.
The government has set itself the goal of reducing private car trips by 85 percent every day of the week, as it happens on Saturdays and Sundays, to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
This decision, advanced yesterday by the Prime Minister, the socialist Pedro Sánchez, comes while Spain is the second country in the world in deaths and the fourth for COVID-19 infections, although the curve of new cases is slowing down this week. .
Today it reached a 9% daily increase, after hovering around 30% for a few days last week.