From the 15th October until the 31th December 2021, the assumed end-date of the state of emergency, the use of the Green Pass will be extended to all public and private employment. This is established by the Decree-Law number 127 entitled “Urgent measures to ensure the safe performance of public and private work through the extension of the scope of the Covid-19 green certification and the strengthening of the screening system” approved by the Council of Ministers.
The rendering of the regulation states that:
- workers who cannot present a valid Green Pass Certification will be considered unjustly absent until the certificate is presented (and in any case no later than the 31th of December 2021); there are no disciplinary consequences and the right to retain the employment relationship is maintained;
- the staff who report the lack of the certificate or are found wihout it when entering the workplace are considered to be absent without the right to remuneration until the Green Certificate is presented; there are no disciplinary consequences and the right to retain employment relationship is maintained;
- from the 15th of October 2021 all workers and staff drivers will be required to carry the Covid-19 Green Pass Certification, so companies will be obligated to introduce new ways of checking, reading and controlling the Green Pass;
- a financial penalty of €600 to €1500 is foreseen for workers who have gained access in breach of the Green Pass obligation.
An extension of the regulation to all transport and logistics activities was inevitable, but the imposition of a Green Pass on the shipping sector raises nowadays many question marks. In fact, there are still too many obstacles to the full and peaceful use of the Green Pass linked, for example, to controls and data processing.
Inspection the green pass to people and drivers incoming the workplace
Companies must define by the 15th of October a person in charge of Green Pass controls (with priority at the entrance); Sogedim responds to government guidelines by adapting its staff to the Green Pass and arranging the necessary controls on people and drivers at the entrance.
Green pass in companies: does it really provide a return to normality?
The question arises whether today the green pass, thanks to which we should no longer be subjected to lockdowns or isolations, is really the solution to facilitate travelling in Europe and to make our country’s workers safer.
There is no shortage of misgivings on the part of industry bodies such as Assotir, the Association of Road Haulage Companies. While it does not in any way dispute the green certificate requirement, it does highlight critical points that cannot be ignored, as demonstrated by the following:
- the road haulage sector has proved to be essential to the survival of the country’s economic fabric during the pandemic;
- the road haulage branch is already going through a critical period due to staff shortages and the lack of drivers.
It cannot be ruled out that the Green Pass obligation for hauliers could therefore lead to severe restrictions on the company’s operations, with repercussions on the entire logistics chain.
ROAD HAULAGE ASSOCIATIONS (UNATRAS) WRITE TO DRAGHI AND GIOVANNINI “UNRAVEL THE UNRESOLVED KNOTS AND CLARIFY APPLICATION TO FOREIGN COMPANIES AS WELL”
If we look at the differences between the obligations in force in our country and those to which foreign companies are subject, the doubt raised by Assotir and the main Italian road haulage associations (Fai-Conftrasporto, Confartigianato Trasporti, Cna-Fita, Assotir, Unitai, Fiap, and Sna-Casartigiani) for the entire sector of goods transport to and from Italy is:
“Does not this additional Green Pass obligation for Italian companies risk limiting the scenarios by further opening up the conquest of new commercial spaces to foreign companies? We would like to underline the need to guarantee the homogeneous application of the rule throughout the national territory to everyone, ensuring compliance with it to both domestic and foreign operators”, write the associations.
This is necessary to prevent dumping and other forms of unfair competition on the market, which in this sense favours foreign carriers who, if the law were applied correctly, would in fact be exempt from the obligation.
The auspice is to arrive at a definitive result to guarantee real and effective health and safety in the workplace, including procedures that are compatible with the various organisational models and processes in force and without affecting the well-being of people, first and foremost, or their roles in the logistics chain.
“We believe that companies should be able to know the validity of the green pass of their employees, in order to facilitate the planning of work, replacements, transfers, compatible with safety obligations, and to be able to identify more easily the operational procedures for the organisation of checks, including sample checks, which are delegated to employers from the 15th of October”, concludes Unatras in the letter sent to the President of the Council.
The key role of logistics during the Covid 19 pandemic has been confirmed on several fronts: the implementation of all the necessary measures made the protection of workers and of all those who had to come into contact with the staff driving vehicles during the loading and unloading of goods possible (memoranda of understanding signed with the trade unions and the Government containing specific guidelines, on 20 March 2020 and 6 April 2021).
The adoption of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and social distancing measures within the offices had a decisive impact on the maintenance of regular logistical operations, and enabled the preservation of national socio-economic unity, which had been put to the test by the emergency.
We conclude by saying that not even at the level of the European Union has there ever been a law that could create operational difficulties for logistics, an activity that has always proved to be essential in the protection of crucial services for citizens and businesses, nor has any form of swab control been envisaged – the only truly effective preventive solution to date for drivers who find themselves crossing the borders between Italy and other EU countries, even several times a week.
Is the Green Pass for transport law? There are unfortunately too many points that remain to be clarified.