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COVID19: What help is there for employees?

Firstly, when talking about wage subsidies it is important to remember that employment law applies, covid or no covid. Remember, at no time can an employer reduce contracted hours, pay rate or other terms unilaterally. An employee must agree in writing. An employer can also never pay under minimum wage, withhold other entitlements or sack an employee without following procedure.

All wage subsidies:

  • Employers must advise employees that they are named in the application and of the outcome.
  • Employers must retain employees for the duration of the wage subsidy.
  • Nothing in any wage subsidy overrides employment law.
  • Only one wage subsidy can be received for an employee at a time, but employers can apply for the Resurgence Wage Subsidy once the Extension ends.


CURRENT SUBSIDIES AS OF AUGUST 21ST 2020:

Wage Subsidy Extension

  • An eight week subsidy
  • Actual 40% decline over a consecutive 30-day period within the last 40 days, compared with the closest period last year.

Resurgence Wage Subsidy

  • A two week subsidy
  • Actual or predicted 40% decline over a consecutive 14-day period within 12 August to 10 September compared with a similar period last year.

Leave Support Scheme

  • Generally for Level 4 or 3, but may be appropriate in other situations

For employees who cannot work because of the following reasons and cannot work from home:

  • have tested positive for COVID-19 and are required to remain off work until they've been cleared by a health professional to be released from self-isolation, or
  • have come into contact with someone who has COVID-19 and must self-isolate for 14 days (as required by Ministry of Health guidelines)
  • are at higher risk if they get COVID-19, and Ministry of Health guidelines recommend they stay at home while public health restrictions are in place
  • have household members who are at higher risk if they get COVID-19 and the Ministry of Health recommends the employee also remains at home to reduce the risk to them.

For more details: https://www.workandincome.govt...