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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure EU-2020-49/1594 – measures in European Union

Commission presents “Staying safe from COVID-19 during winter” strategy

Country European Union , applies eu-wide (or beyond)
Time period Open ended, started on 02 December 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Non-binding recommendations or other texts
Category Promoting the economic, labour market and social recovery
– Other
Author Barbara Surdykowska and Eurofound
Measure added 10 December 2020 (updated 22 January 2021)

Background information

The European Commission adopted a strategy for sustainably managing the COVID-19 over the winter time. The plan recommends continued vigilance and caution throughout the winter period and into 2021 when the roll out of safe and effective vaccines will hopefully occur. The Commission will then provide further guidance on a gradual and coordinated lifting of containment measures.

The strategy builds on previous recommendations such as the April European roadmap on the careful phasing out of containment measures, the July Communication on short-term preparedness and the October Communication on additional COVID-19 response measures.

Content of measure

The Commission recommends that Member States take the following actions:

  • Physical distancing and limiting social contacts, key for the winter months including the holiday period.
  • Testing and contact tracing, essential for detecting clusters and breaking transmission.
  • Safe travel, with a possible increase in travel over the end-of-year holidays requiring a coordinated approach.
  • Healthcare capacity and personnel. Business continuity plans for healthcare settings should be put in place to make sure COVID-19 outbreaks can be managed, and access to other treatments maintained.
  • Pandemic fatigue and mental health are natural responses to the current situation. Member States should follow the World Health Organisation European Region's guidance on reinvigorating public support to address pandemic fatigue.
  • National vaccination strategies. The Commission stands ready to support Member States where necessary in the deployment of vaccines as per their deployment and vaccination plans.

Use of measure

Not applicable.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Applies to all workers Applies to all businesses Applies to all citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
EU (Council, EC, EP)
European Funds
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: N/A

Involvement

No involvement

Views and reactions

No views were expressed

Sources

  • 15 April 2020: A European roadmap to lifting coronavirus containment measures (ec.europa.eu)
  • 15 July 2020: OMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS Short-term EU health preparedness for COVID-19 outbreaks COM/2020/318 final (eur-lex.europa.eu)
  • 28 October 2020: COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE EUROPEAN COUNCIL AND THE COUNCIL on additional COVID-19 response measures (eur-lex.europa.eu)
  • 02 December 2020: COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND THE COUNCIL Staying safe from COVID-19 during winter (ec.europa.eu)

Citation

Eurofound (2020), Commission presents “Staying safe from COVID-19 during winter” strategy, measure EU-2020-49/1594 (measures in European Union), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/EU-2020-49_1594.html

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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.