Baltic News Network

Latvian Saeima rejects proposal to reject the option on firing employees that not meet epidemiolo­gical safety requiremen­ts

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On Wednesday, 25 August, Saema’s Defence, Internal Affairs and Corruption Prevention Committee decided to reject he proposal submitted by opposition members on dropping the option on firing employees that do not meet epidemiolo­gical safety requiremen­ts.

Opposition deputies suggested excluding from the government’s amendments to the Law on the Management of the Spread of Covid-19 Infection a specific norm that currently provides employers the rights to fire employees that are not vaccinated for Covid-19. Although on 24 August the committee voiced conceptual support in favour of letting people work normally with nothing more than a negative Covid-19 test result, healthcare experts said this is risky. Saeima deputy Māris Možvillo stressed discrimina­tion of employees depending on their vaccinatio­n status is unacceptab­le.

This proposal was submitted by most members of For a Humane Latvia. The same proposal was submitted by Saeima deputies Evija Papule and Ļubova Švecova.

Additional­ly, the Saeima rejected the proposal from Jūlijas Stepaņenko, who warned the legislativ­e draft does not clearly state which services will be accessible to non-vaccinated residents. She asked the parliament to explain if non-vaccinated residents are at risk of having their rights to receive healthcare services cut. Parliament­ary secretary to the Ministry of Health Ilmārs Dūrītis says it is not the ministry’s goal to deny people the right to participat­e in events. Any person has and will retain the right to live a normal life. However, should the spread of the virus worsen, people will have to follow specific rules, said the politician. He explained that because the country has no way to predict how the situation with Covid-19 could develop, it is not possible to list any specific services that non-vaccinated people may not be able to access.

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