WORKERS who need to self-isolate for COVID-19 reasons will now be paid by the government in a new scheme announced today.

Wage-earners and the self-employed will receive £52.50 a day when they have already used up all their sick leave.

Part-time or casual workers can also apply for the scheme, which can be received after a simple email is sent to the authorities.

The amount has been calculated based on the monthly BEAT COVID-19 payment of £1,155 arranged over the summer for ‘inactive’ workers.

Only those told to self-isolate by the medical authorities and who cannot work remotely will be applicable for up to 10 days in self-isolation.

“This scheme gives businesses the financial support to pay their employees when they are unable to work,” said the Gibraltar Government.

“It is also for employees to feel safe in the knowledge that they will receive an income if they are unable to work because they have to self-isolate.

“This is a last resort scheme as an employee that has sick pay should use their sick pay and receive their contracted salary.

“But we want to avoid someone who has used all of their sick pay from returning to work because they need the money.”

The measure has long been claimed by Unite the Union that is serving society by trying to protect local workers.

Holiday pay

It was also announced yesterday that all workers made redundant due to COVID-19 will have to be paid their holiday pay too.

This was another Unite the Union demand after the government suspended holiday pay and annual leave to all workers when they were inactive during the lockdown.

“We are identifying employers who have made redundancies and will need to adjust their calculations following this policy clarification,” said the department of Employment

“Any employees who have any queries in respect of the impact of this policy in respect of their calculations are encouraged to contact their union or email the Department of Employment.

More information for employers and employees is available online in a leaflet explaining citizens’ rights.

Random testing 2.0

Finally, Public Health Gibraltar is doing a random testing programme of Gibraltar citizens to find out the spread of the virus on the Rock.

A thousand people have been selected at random to represent the whole population to find out what measures will have to be taken during Christmas and New Year festivities.

“The people of Gibraltar are asked to respond to these invitations, and present themselves to the Mid-Town Drive Through for testing as soon as possible,” said the authorities.

“Those tested will have the choice of remaining anonymous, if they so wish.”

This is the second random test after the one carried out in April, with invitations to be sent out this week.

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