The United Arab Emirates (UAE) government recently introduced – for the first time – a mandatory unemployment insurance scheme. The scheme aims to protect employees who lose their jobs for reasons out of their control, by ensuring the availability of unemployment income for up to three months. The new Involuntary Loss of Employment (ILOE) insurance scheme, which was announced by the Minister of Human Resources and Emiratization in May 2022, came into effect 1 January 2023.
The Polish Government introduced a bill that expands parental leave entitlements and introduces a right to flexible work arrangements for parents of young children and carers, as well as
carers leave and emergency leave for all employees.
The amendments aim to align Poland with the European Union Directive No. 2019/1158 on work-life balance for parents and carers.
The Bill is in the initial legislative stages and still needs to be passed by both houses of the Polish parliament and signed by the President before it becomes law. The exact implementation date is not yet known.
The Spanish parliament recently passed new legislation introducing multiple changes to menstrual and reproductive health legislation including a government-paid temporary sick leave for female employees who suffer severe menstrual pain. The new leave (also called “menstrual leave”) may be taken for as long as needed so long as the temporary medical incapacity is approved by a doctor.
The legislation will enter into effect three months after its publication in the Official Gazette (the exact publication date is still yet to be determined).
On 30 March 2023, the European Parliament adopted the Pay Transparency Directive (the “Directive”) to increase pay transparency and to close the gender pay gap across European Union (“EU”) member states. The Directive imposes, among other things, gender pay gap reporting obligations for larger employers, transparency obligations regarding pay setting, the right for employees to request pay information, as well as protective measures and access to justice for victims of pay discrimination.
In due course, the Directive will be submitted to the European Council to be formally approved and published in the EU Official Journal. The Directive will come into force 20 days after its publication date, and member states will be required to pass national legislation meeting the new minimum requirements established by the Directive within three years.
The government of Guernsey recently approved a secondary pensions policy requiring the mandatory, automatic enrollment of employees into either a government-facilitated defined-contribution scheme (Your Island Pension- YIP) or a qualified, employer-sponsored pension plan.
Contributions will start at 1% for both the employer and the employee. The contribution rate will automatically increase annually until it reaches 3.5% for employers and 6.5% for employees in 2031.
The UK government is increasing the rates of statutory pay for family leave (effective 2 April 2023) and sick pay (effective 6 April 2023).
The Mexican government recently introduced amendments to the Federal Labor Law and to the Federal Law for State Workers to provide a government-paid menstrual leave of up to three days per month for all employees who menstruate, including cisgender women, transgender men, intersex, and non-binary persons.
The proposed amendments are in the initial legislative stages and have not yet been enacted.
The French government recently introduced legislation aiming to reform the country’s pension system by gradually increasing the minimum retirement age from 62 to 64, as well as the number of years of insured employment needed to be eligible for a full pension from 42 to 43 years.
To speed the passage of the controversial reform, the French government used its constitutional power to bypass the parliament vote. The reform is expected to enter into effect once its compliance with the French constitution is confirmed by May 2023.
The Bulgarian government recently amended its Labour Code to extend paternity leave entitlements and introduce a right to flexible work arrangements for parents of young children and carers. The amendments align Bulgaria with the European Union Directive No. 2019/1158 on work-life balance for parents and carers.
The amendments were published in the State Gazette and became effective on 1 August 2022.
In an effort to enhance the adequacy of statutory minimum wages, promote collective bargaining on wage-setting, and improve access to minimum wage protections, European Union (EU) member states will be required, no later than 15 November 2024, to pass national legislation meeting new minimum requirements established by Directive 2022/2041 of 19 October 2022 (the “Directive”) on adequate minimum wages.