The States has approved regulations placed before the Assembly by the Minister for SocSec that will have a major impact for some employers and employees in Jersey.
In essence the Minister has accepted recommendations made by the Employment Forum following a period of consultation to increase annual leave entitlements for staff and give a statutory right to daily rest breaks with effect from January 1st 2022.
What are the expected changes?
The statutory entitlement to annual leave will increase from two weeks to three weeks (10 days to 15 days full time). Every worker will also have an entitlement to a 15 minute rest break in any period worked of 6 hours or more. This break can be paid or unpaid at the employer’s discretion.
What impact could this have?
This may have limited impact for some employers who have enhanced holiday entitlements and rest breaks already enshrined in their contracts, Handbooks and policies. However many other, particularly smaller organisations have tended to apply these arrangements in line with the current legislation so these changes on January 1st 2022 will need to be considered and addressed and the additional costs per employee factored in. Interestingly the Draft placed before the Assembly ended with a section entitled “Financial and manpower implications”. – which are described as being “there are no financial or manpower implications arising from these draft Regulations” – undoubtedly some businesses and organisations will have a different perspective!
What might employers need to do?
Employing organisations that are affected may need to consider a range of factors – for example whether contracts, handbooks and polices are going to be fit for purpose. It may be necessary to review workforce plans including shift and rostering arrangements, and the administration of annual leave and scheduling of rest breaks and timesheet recording, to enable effective and safe staffing levels at all times. The application of 4% to hourly rates to reflect statutory holiday entitlement for those working on zero hours contracts will obviously have to be revisited.
How we can help
There is not much time left before these changes take effect and employers will need to move with pace. HR Now have considerable experience of assisting businesses cope with changes to employment law and employers are encouraged to get in touch if they need any advice, support or assistance please contact us at email@example.com or 01534 747559.
You might like to read our advice guide on Contracts of Employment