Work-from-home to be a right in Netherlands soon

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The new legislation comes at a time when companies worldwide struggle to bring workers back to the office…reports Asian Lite News

The Netherlands is on the verge of making work-from-home a legal right for employees. Last week, the Dutch Parliament’s lower house passed legislation in this regard. The European country now needs to wait for approval from the Senate.

Currently, employers in the Netherlands can deny any request from workers about working from home without giving any reason. Under the new law, employers must consider all such requests and give adequate reasons for refusing them.

“It allows them to find a better work-life balance and reduce time spent on commuting,” said Senna Maatoug of the GroenLinks party, reported the Wall Street Journal. Maatoug was one of the co-authors of the bill.

The new bill is an amendment to the Netherland’s Flexible Working Act of 2015, which allows workers to request changes in their working hours, schedule and even place of work.

The Netherlands is already well-regarded for its worker rights.

The new legislation comes at a time when companies worldwide struggle to bring workers back to the office.

While some companies have been accommodating in bringing their employees back, others like Salesforce have mostly done away with in-office working completely.

Some others, like Tesla, still have coerced employees to return to the office. Tesla founder and CEO Elon Musk had warned employees that they could either return to the workplace or leave the company.

For Dutch corporations, the new legislation isn’t expected to be as contentious. With 14 per cent of the workforce already working remotely two years before the pandemic, according to Eurostat, the acceptance of remote working is much higher in the lowlands.

But legislation and regulation have had to play catch-up as remote working has seen a significant uptick since Covid-19 in 2020.

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