Factsheet for case DE-2021-1/865 – measures in Germany
|Country||Germany , applies nationwide|
|Time period||Open ended, started on 01 January 2021|
|Type||Legislations or other statutory regulations|
Protection of workers, adaptation of workplace
– Occupational health and safety
|Author||Birgit Kraemer (Hans Boeckler Foundation) and Eurofound|
|Case created||21 May 2020 (updated 22 May 2020)|
Workers in slaughterhouses in Germany, which often employ migrant workers and workers from temporary work agencies, have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19 infections. Many factories had to close for several weeks. Working conditions in industrial meat factories have been subject of political debate before, but shortcomings in occupational health and safety, infection prevention and health protection standards, and the resulting high number of infections, now have led to the implementation of new regulations in the meat industry. This followed a debate in the German parliament and a meeting of the responsible minister with industry representatives. New regulations are to be be put in law and the competent authorities will enforce them more vigorously.
The German government lists the following measures (see source dated 20 May 2020):
No information available yet.
Workers in non-standard forms of employment
Sector specific set of companies
||Does not apply to citizens|
Company / Companies
No special funding required
Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:
|Trade unions||Employers' organisations|
|Form||Not applicable||Not applicable|
Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:
On the side of trade unions, the measures were welcomed. The German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) and Nahrung-Genuss-Gaststätten (NGG), a trade union in the food industry, welcomed the regulations as a basis to put an end to organising the entire production process through chains of subcontractors.
On the side of employer organisations, the measures were critizised. The Central Association of the German Poultry Industry described the decision 'wrong and disproportionate' and as a risk to keeping factories open and preserving jobs.
|Economic area||Sector (NACE level 2)|
|C - Manufacturing||C10 Manufacture of food products|
|Occupation (ISCO level 2)|
|Food processing, wood working, garment and other craft and related trades workers|
Eurofound (2020), Stricter regulations for the meat industry, case DE-2021-1/865 (measures in Germany), COVID-19 EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, http://eurofound.link/covid19eupolicywatch
Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process. All information is preliminary and subject to change.