Communication from the Commission Guidelines on seasonal workers in the EU in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak
COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION
Guidelines on seasonal workers in the EU in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak
(2020/C 235 I/01)
Certain sectors of the European economy, in particular the agri-food and tourism sectors, depend on the support of seasonal workers, coming from other Member States or from third countries, for specific periods of the year. Very often, such workers retain their main place of residence in their home country and move temporarily to a Member State to carry out an activity dependent on the passing of the seasons.
Cross-border seasonal workers enjoy a broad set of rights, which may differ depending on whether they are Union citizens or third-country nationals. Nevertheless, given the temporary nature of their work and the particular circumstances they work in, they can be more vulnerable to precarious working and living conditions. The COVID-19 pandemic gave more visibility to these conditions, and in some cases exacerbated them. In addition, it showed that in some cases such problems can lead to the further spreading of infectious diseases and increase the risk of COVID-19 clusters.
Hence, appropriate actions are needed as a matter of urgency. These guidelines complement the Guidelines concerning the exercise of the free movement of workers during COVID-19 outbreak, published on 30 March 2020 (1) and respond to a call of the European Parliament in its resolution of 19 June 2020 on the protection of cross-border and seasonal workers. (2) These Guidelines address both EU seasonal workers and third-country seasonal workers in the EU and, unless otherwise specified, measures below refer to both groups.