Responding to First Minister Mark Drakeford’s comments on the potential for employees to be fined £60 for not working from home if they are able to, Welsh Liberal Democrat Leader Jane Dodds MS has stated that explanations remain unclear and that the rule should be immediately dropped.
During his press conference, First Minister Mark Drakeford defended the fines by stating that the legislation for their enforcement has been in place throughout the pandemic and was voted for by the Senedd.
Responding Jane Dodds stated:
“It is inaccurate to state the system of fines is the same as in the past. Regulation 18B, which covers the fines referred to was introduced in a different context and while it was voted for by the Senedd, we voted for it under very different circumstances.
“At the time all of Wales was under a stay at home mandate, while at the present time the guidance only applies to certain employers and employees.
“Concern over these fine is not down to “unhelpful reporting”, but rather a serious concern the Government is not recognising the power dynamics between workers and employers. It is not a relationship of equals and a great many people will not feel comfortable having to challenge their employer or face a fine.
“I join workers and unions across wales once again urge the Welsh Government and First Minister to drop these fines aimed at employees.”