There have been many changes in working lives and regulations over the past two years but the main issues that companies should keep in mind are the changes in COVID-19 guidelines, the labor reform’s initiative on vacations, the entry into force of labor courts and the new model of union democracy, reports Ernst & Young (EY).
In Mexico, millions had to work remotely during the pandemic, while others had to deal with wage losses or layoffs. The country took several measures to reduce the impact of the pandemic on the labor market, including regulations for remote work. Now, authorities are changing these regulations to make these measures more flexible, reports EY. These measures include the project NOM PROY-NOM-037-STPS-2022, which concerns safety and health measures for remote work. Although it is still a draft, its implications include the provision of annual training to workers on the telework mode. It also forces companies to inform workers about the risks of the activity they do and to provide the tools for workers to develop their activities. Finally, the NOM states that companies should put in writing, implement, disseminate and maintain a policy on teleworking. On the other hand, the use of masks is no longer mandatory and vaccination is no longer a determining factor in the hiring of personnel, as stated by Alejandro Caro, Labor Law and Employment Partner, EY Mexico.
A potential game changer is the Labor Vacation Reform Initiative, which seeks to raise the minimum vacation days in the formal private sector from six to 12. This initiative is expected to have financial effects and impact the company’s productivity. In some cases, workers will have to be hired for a specific period of time to cover the vacation period. The initiative also includes an increase in the settlement for workers if they cannot use their vacation period. This increase would also affect social security, given that taking more vacation days affects vacation premium, raising the base contribution salary (SBC), according to Jacqueline Álvarez, Labor Law and Employment Partner, EY Mexico.
Finally, the new labor justice model states that labor courts must operate in all states. This reform includes new procedural advantages for the worker, according to Caro. In general, the reform seeks for the worker and the employee to conciliate before the lawsuit reaches a labor court.