Europe

Czech workers given extra holiday for having COVID jab

The Czech government announced on Friday that state employees who have received their COVID-19 vaccination will be entitled to two days paid holiday.

The holiday is valid until the end of 2021, Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš told a news conference in Prague.

Babiš encouraged regional and local governments to follow suit, as well as urging private companies to encourage their employees to get the vaccine.

Some, including car manufacturer Skoda, have already been offering incentives to encourage their workers to get the jab, Babiš added.

The decision to offer free days off to those who get vaccinated has been criticized by opposition parties, who dismissed it as a populist gesture ahead of the October legislative elections.

But Babiš told reporters that the government sees vaccination as “the most crucial thing” and will “keep constantly promoting it”.

The country of 10.6 million people has recorded 30,363 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic and more than 1.6 million infections.

About 62.6% of Czechia’s adult population has received at least one dose of the vaccine and 54.2% is now fully inoculated, according to the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control’s vaccine tracker.

Across the whole of the European Union, 70.5% of adults have been administered one dose with 57.3% fully vaccinated.


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