Muriel Pénicaud at the National Assembly, March 25, 2020. - Jacques Witt / SIPA

Faced with the Covid-19 crisis, more than 337,000 companies have applied for short-time working, Labor Minister Muriel Pénicaud said on Wednesday. These requests concern a total of 3.6 million employees.

#CORONAVIRUS # COVID19 | Partial unemployment is 84% ​​of your net earnings and 100% if you earn the minimum wage or less. And this, for all employees. @murielpenicaud answers your questions 👇

- Government (@gouvernementFR) March 28, 2020

The device, which now concerns one employee in five, "is in full rise," recognized the minister, recalling that its purpose was to "protect jobs" and avoid layoffs. The minister did not give a figure on the cost, but according to those around her, this represents, over a period of three months, a potential expenditure of 11 billion euros, well beyond the 8.5 billion budgeted by the amending finance bill.

To better start "after the crisis"

"These costs are an investment, it is our rebound to start as soon as possible after the crisis," she said. Without it, "the cost would be even higher" due to "massive unemployment," she said.

"In the United States, where there is no partial unemployment, there were only three million layoffs in a week," she said. Partial unemployment compensates the employee up to 70% of gross salary and 84% of net salary. It is now fully supported by the State up to a gross salary of 4.5 times the minimum wage, which represents 95% of wages. Beyond this, the differential is the responsibility of the employer.

Companies have 30 days to file their request, with retroactive effect. No response within 48 hours from the regional labor office on which they depend, the request is considered to have been accepted.


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