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  #21  
Old 09.03.2020, 12:18
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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I’ve been wondering how it is at the moment for teachers?
Why not shift the summer school break (and other schools breaks) and do them now?
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  #22  
Old 09.03.2020, 12:32
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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My weekend has been spent answering questions like. "I'm thinking of taking a vacation tomorrow in Tehran, with a stopover to see my sick parents in Milan - Can you confirm I'm ok to come back to the office next Monday?"

It's clear that most employers have no idea how to respond to what's going on. I've never felt so unqualified or so far down the food chain..
What a moron, I'm sorry you have to go through this. I think the problem is that we have arrived at a status where nobody wants to make a decision because they are afraid that if it's the wrong one, they get the blame. What they do not realise is that not making a decision is also a choice. Inaction is an action too.
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  #23  
Old 09.03.2020, 13:04
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Why not shift the summer school break (and other schools breaks) and do them now?
Errrm because it’s not summer.
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  #24  
Old 09.03.2020, 13:33
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Imagine if the media were to get hold of this information....

Your employer is not handling this well at all. Surely you cannot be expected to go into work.
They already have, from what I gather, Inside Paradeplatz certainly is on the story. I reckon the furiously typed internal communications message advising all staff to direct any questions from the media to the appropriate comms person and not to respond to them directly should have hit the intraweb before lunchtime today.

Again, nobody wants to be the first to risk the bottom line. Places like Google can use this as a case study to test their various remote working solutions and they also have a considerable war chest to fall back on. But what of the businesses that rely on actually facing the great hand-unwashed to bring in their paychecks? If a country like Switzerland cannot establish some sort of clear guidance and aid to stop the spread, what are less wealthy and organised places meant to do?

There is a saying in the Swiss French part: "Il y'en a point comme nous" (there are no others like us) - so how about we show them what a nation of borderline pathological neat freaks, radical self-responsibility preachers and minding each other's business professionals can do when these traits could turn out to be an advantage?* We are raised to always consider what happens if everyone did what we are doing right now ("was wänn das alli würded mache?"), it kind of baffles me that people seem either unable to apply that when it actually matters or have incompetent higher-ups blocking them from doing so.

*statement may include hyperbole for the sake of the argument
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  #25  
Old 09.03.2020, 14:11
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Why not shift the summer school break (and other schools breaks) and do them now?
Final exams due in june.
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  #26  
Old 10.03.2020, 08:21
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

What happened here?!? Was something libellous said? Hope the original poster is OK!
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  #27  
Old 10.03.2020, 08:24
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

Nothing to do with the OP.

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There were good reasons to do so to protect both the OP and potentially EF itself.

Sorry you feel disrespected, I'll look through the thread and see if it might be possible to sanitise it, leave any useful information in place and reopen the thread. No promises though, as it was quite involved and we really don't want to jeopardise anyone.
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  #28  
Old 10.03.2020, 09:05
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

I learned that a big pharma company in Basel tested COVID-19 positive in two cases and everyone is still expected to come to work as normal...

My company has reluctantly allowed me to work remotely for one week, not that it will be any better the next. For anyone that has a long commute and their jobs do not depend on them being actually in the office, they should be mandating a remote working program until this calms down. I know several companies already have...
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  #29  
Old 10.03.2020, 09:45
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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...[things which are none of your concern]...
I think it may be wise to reword what you said within your post. We are talking about a purely hypothetical situation. Many people are frightened about what happens and this thread is here to exchange knowledge on a hypothetical basis without putting anyone's employment at risk. I hope that is clear enough. Any drama and pot stirring can be done in the other thread.
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  #30  
Old 10.03.2020, 09:50
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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I learned that a big pharma company in Basel tested COVID-19 positive in two cases and everyone is still expected to come to work as normal...

My company has reluctantly allowed me to work remotely for one week, not that it will be any better the next. For anyone that has a long commute and their jobs do not depend on them being actually in the office, they should be mandating a remote working program until this calms down. I know several companies already have...
Home office doesn't really work well for lab technicians, usually there are just two people working in a lab, not really crowded there.
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  #31  
Old 10.03.2020, 10:11
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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That made me laugh! Surely a cough and sneeze on the phone would be similarly effective, but less dangerous?
Doesn´t have the same clout as if the boss is wiping his face after you hack a lung up.
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  #32  
Old 10.03.2020, 10:12
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Home office doesn't really work well for lab technicians, usually there are just two people working in a lab, not really crowded there.
Fume extraction cabinets are usually big enough to sit in (if you really try). You could each work in a separate extraction cabinet and thus be isolated.
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  #33  
Old 10.03.2020, 10:51
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Home office doesn't really work well for lab technicians, usually there are just two people working in a lab, not really crowded there.
Which is why I said for those who can, should work remotely. I understand not everyone can, but it would cause a huge reduction in commuters.
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  #34  
Old 10.03.2020, 10:56
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Fume extraction cabinets are usually big enough to sit in (if you really try). You could each work in a separate extraction cabinet and thus be isolated.


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Which is why I said for those who can, should work remotely. I understand not everyone can, but it would cause a huge reduction in commuters.
Yes I agree. A student told me that around 40% of her department works from home now.
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  #35  
Old 10.03.2020, 11:03
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

SECO, the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, has put a FAQ on their website that addresses questions like this (from both the employer and employee perspectives):

- what happens if I can't come to work because ___? (I'm quarantined, I'm sick, I'm healthy but my kid is sick, my kid is healthy but schools are closed, I can't get to work because public transport is not running etc)

- what happens if I can't keep my business open because ____? (ordered to close by authorities, too short on staff, can't get raw materials delivered, lack of customers etc)

- can I require my employees to work overtime? can I require them to reduce their hours? can I transfer them to a different office? can I declare "Betriebsferien" (company holidays) and make everyone use their vacation days now? (and all of the above from the employee perspective, i.e. "can my employer do ____?")

- I'm unemployed and RAV wants to meet with me / send me on a course or a work placement, but I'm worried about the pandemic risk. Can I say no?

...and on and on.


It's the link "FAQ: Pandemie und Betriebe" near the bottom of this page:
https://www.seco.admin.ch/seco/de/ho.../Pandemie.html

It's not available in English and I haven't time to translate the whole thing, but holler if anyone needs a specific paragraph and machine translation isn't cutting it.
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  #36  
Old 10.03.2020, 17:47
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

My co-workers from the heaviest impacted countries are obliged to work from home office while elsewhere they are encouraged and supported to work remotely.

I think telecommuting is actually beneficial to the business because it reduces the uncertainty, sick leave/quarantine disruptions and also the employees do have families as well to care about so the healthier they are the less likely it is the families will fall sick (or at least not many of them at the same time).

Seeing the Italian and South Korean health care overloaded with grave cases I don't understand why there is still certain dismissiveness bordering on denial about this virus in some circles.
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  #37  
Old 10.03.2020, 21:47
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

Last week, most employees worked from home already.
Except Helpdesk and reception and a few people who come in by car (and all Datacenter-staff, IIRC).

I think Helpdesk is now trialling home-office, too.

One of the main problems is public transport. Some people will need to attend their jobs anyway (retail staff for Coop etc.), no matter what.

They will need to have masks/PPE to come to work, at work and return from work.

They will need to be taught how to put them on and off without infecting themselves.
That's the reality of things and authorities and companies should get started on this ASAP.
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  #38  
Old 10.03.2020, 22:03
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Why not shift the summer school break (and other schools breaks) and do them now?
Exams. And contracts. And holiday dates already agreed/confirmed/ set in stone with the powers that be.
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  #39  
Old 10.03.2020, 22:03
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

If everyone who can work from home does so, it will make it easier to travel safely on public transport, i.e. with enough distance. What if we put in place a ticketing system for trams/buses? As in, the maximum number of people allowed on a tram is X, reserve a spot for the 7.58 from A to B at least 15 minutes beforehand or walk (old people excluded, they can travel as they please at their own risk).
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  #40  
Old 10.03.2020, 22:12
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Re: Corona virus - difficult employer situation

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Why not shift the summer school break (and other schools breaks) and do them now?
Would not work because of things stated above. Things like holidays are not just holidays, I have a legal obligation (and a moral one) to ensure that my daughter visits her father in our home country during holidays for example. The cost of travel during school holidays means that many people, especially us foreigners, organise trips very far in advance for cost reasons.

Also, just because schools are closed, it does not mean kids will not learn. Many schools have set up skype or internet links etc for home learning. Much like many adults can work from home, many school subjects can be learned at home.
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