Insider Economy Public servants to contribute to coronavirus-hit services

Public servants to contribute to coronavirus-hit services

Public servants and wider public sector employees could be asked to contribute to other services which are being over stretched   because of emergencies created by the coronavirus.

In a circular, Finance Ministry Permanent Secretary George Panteli said the Council of Ministers has decided not to exclude this possibility because of coronavirus-created emergencies.

At the same time, he said that as from Tuesday and up  until April 16 the public and wider public sector will work with only the necessary number of personnel within the framework of safety measures.

The Permanent Secretary then noted that the specific staff will only handle urgent issues and serve the public in emergency situations.

As for staff who will not be going in to their workplace and stay home, they have to implement teleworking or some other form of flexible employment.

“That’s why ministers will proceed immediately with determining the needs of their ministries and departments/services for the purpose of managing these issues,” the circular also said.

Heads of organisations in the broader public sector should follow suit.  And the need to restrict employees belonging to high-risk groups as reported by the Ministry of Health should be taken into account when designating safety-net personnel, the circular added.

The absence of employees who are parents and need to stay at home to care for their children up to 15 years of age should also be taken into account.

In these cases, the circular said that employees should be available at all times or perform work from home where possible.

The above arrangements exclude essential businesses necessary to ensure continuous power supply (EAC), water supply (water supply boards) and communications such as telephony (CyTA).

Also excluded are services gearing for the safe operation of air transport and air traffic control, hospitals and prisons. As well as equipment maintenance and electromechanical facilities for the National Guard, police, fire department and port traffic services.

By Eleftheria Paizanou


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