HOTREC, the European umbrella association of Hotels, Restaurants and Cafés, and its trade union counterpart EFFAT, the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions, advise companies and employees to respect all health and safety measures. As the outbreak is having a sharp negative impact on the hospitality sector, HOTREC and EFFAT call on the European institutions and Member States to take all necessary measures, in consultation with the social partners, to support the sector.
“Member States and companies should act responsibly and follow official recommendations from WHO, and national officials to ensure health and safety of employees and guests in the travel and tourism industry”, commented Jens Zimmer Christensen, HOTREC President.
“Companies should develop plans to be prepared for suspected COVID-19 cases in their premises. Companies should strive to find solutions to tackle any temporary impact on employment, with the aim to avoid redundancies of workers and job cuts, in close cooperation with workers and their representatives”, stated Kristjan Bragason, EFFAT General Secretary.
Wash hands regularly; use alcohol hand rub; cough and sneeze into your elbow; avoid handshakes and hugs; regularly clean surfaces which are touched often – these are some of the golden rules recommended
by public authorities and social partners to limit the spread of the virus. It is also advised that workers remotely contact health care services and their employers (e.g. by telephone), if they suspect that they might be infected, and that they stay at home until the situation is cleared.
EFFAT and HOTREC call upon governments to provide support to companies and workers to tackle the impact on employment and businesses (e.g. tax relief; short- or medium-term liquidity loans; temporary short-time work), and urge upon the EU to facilitate national state aid deployment.
Social partners will work together to find employment solutions.