No entitlement to a home office / One note: The remaining meaning – economics

We are worried about the most unpleasant weeks of the year. January stretches, ice and snow can also be expected in February and March are state elections. And now the generally disciplined Germans are out of breath in their daily lives with Corona. The crowds on the snow-capped hills of the Sauerland or Harz Mountains were able to tell how much movement, distraction and diversity were needed. Buses and trains are currently busier than during the first virus wave in the spring, which is also due to the working population. In April, 27 percent worked from home, in November it was only 14 percent, economists count. And there is an immediate demand for the right to work from home. Regulate the place of work by law?

A piercing call for politics

Have a lot of fun with it. Who defines in which industries and companies how many employees should be allowed to work from home? How does it work in trade and industry, in crafts and construction, or in personal care and education services? In these crazy times, the call for politics and new laws is getting louder. It is also a way to deal with dissatisfaction with the stagnant rate of infection. Effective measures are much needed, people are increasingly impatient and overburdened politicians are trying to make themselves visible with the steepest ideas possible to create the impression of strength. This may sound promising if the “economy” is to end or the obligation to work from home is to be introduced. But what makes it better? And what will get worse?

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The works council should regulate the home office

The costs and risks as well as the bureaucratic effort are considerable. However, leaving it to the employer to decide when, how and where to work will not help. The length and timing of working hours are subject to codecision, so that works councils and trade unions are involved. This should also apply to the home office – provided that there are works councils. Here, the legislator could launch and modernize the law on the constitutional protection of employees in order to enable more works councils and greater participation in mobile work. Because who and where and under what conditions works, CEOs and employee councils earn the best. And no political activists.

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