Inspectorate to do more checks on social distancing at work


The Inspectorate for Social Affairs and enforcement will from now on be stricter in the enforcement of coronavirus rules in the workplace. According to the Inspectorate, employers have had enough time to get used to and adjust to measures like social distancing, spokesperson Paul van der Burg said to BNR.

“Given the duration of the crisis, employers will have to take their measures to ensure that their employees work safely. It can no longer be the case that we let it go for so long. It can also not be the case that employers still say they have to buy splash screens or other items. They have already had that opportunity. We will be stricter in the coming period and also inspect more,” Van der Burg said.

Up to and including August 2, the Inspectorate received 2,797 reports from employees regarding the violation of coronavirus rules. The most complaints came from the retail trade and wholesale sector, at 17 percent of reports. This was followed by the culture, sports and service sector, and the catering industry, with 15 and 13 percent of reports respectively.

Strikingly, the provinces from which most reports came are also the provinces with many new coronavirus infections, BNR noted. 24 percent of reports came from Zuid-Holland, 17 percent from Noord-Brabant, and 16 percent from Noord-Holland.

The reports mainly concerned failures to adhere to social distancing, followed by reports of poor hygienic conditions. The Inspectorate also received many reports about colleagues coming to work with coronavirus symptoms.

The Inspectorate investigated all the reports, and eventually acted against 30 companies. Most received an official warning or a warning that will be followed by a fine if there is no improvement. So far, no company was actually fined. The Inspectorate did, however, temporarily close two companies because they did not or insufficiently followed the coronavirus rules.