No certificate – no job. Employers in Latvia to be able to lay off non-vaccinated workers

On 4 November Latvia’s parliament passed in the final reading amendments to the law that provide employers the right to lay off non-vaccinated employees who fall under the requirement for compulsory Covid-19 vaccination.
Employees will be allowed to be laid off if they fail to undergo vaccination within at least three months after their suspension. In the event of a lay-off, the non-vaccinated employee will be paid compensation worth one monthly wage amount.
Previously the government decided to declare a three-month state of emergency on 11 October. At the same time, the government imposed restrictions to limit the spread of Covid-19 and to expand vaccination coverage. Emphasis is put on remote work and the requirement for workers of state and municipal institutions to vaccinate for Covid-19.
The Law on the Management of the Spread of Covid-19 Infection states that employers have the right to suspend employees from their posts if they do not have a valid Covid-19 vaccination or recovery certificate.
The Ministry of Justice notes that if employees do not have a valid Covid-19 vaccination or recovery certificate, it is reason to believe this person does not meet the requirements for the job.
If it is not possible for the employer to transfer employees to other posts and make it possible for the employee to work remotely, the employer has the right to suspend the employee until he or she acquires a vaccination or Covid-19 recovery certificate and withhold the wage for the period of downtime.
If the employee fails to secure a valid vaccination or recovery certificate in three months after suspension for no objective reason, the employer will have the right to terminate employment relations and pay a compensation equal to a monthly wage.
The proposal from Saeima’s Legal Affairs Committee to permit termination of employment relations without complying with the term outlined in Part 1 of Section 100 of the Labour Law was also approved by the parliament.
Following the proposal from Minister of Defence Artis Pabriks, the parliament decided that soldiers of the National Armed Forces will be allowed to be dismissed ahead of the term outlined in the Military Service Law if they fail to secure a valid Covid-19 vaccination or recovery certificate without a justified reason.
The legislative draft also includes the proposal from Minister of Health Daniels Pavļuts, allowing for suspension, cancellation and restoration of Covid-19 certificates.
Proposals submitted by the opposition were rejected at the 4 November.