Forcing workers back in offices is (still) irresponsible

Just like in June last year or last September, we can see looming in the near future a disorganised situation of workers coming back to offices caused, among other things, by blurry government guidelines.

If the Covid-19 pandemic seems to be slowly, but surely, winding down in France, the virus is still circulating and people are still dying from this disease every day. Worse yet, if we look at the United Kingdom, a country where the number of Covid cases fell down as well, we see that recently it started to rise again because of new variants, making epidemiologists worried. The main takeaway from 2020 is that we need to avoid rushed decisions !

This is, however, what we are witnessing at several video game companies. The eagerness of some french bosses to make workers come back to their offices is shameful. It reveals, at best, a hasty and simplistic understanding of the situation, and at worst a disgusting priorisation of hypothetical profits and a will to exert power over workers. Whatever the reason, it jeopardizes the health not only of video game workers but the population in general.

It is natural and understandable that many of us are eager to come back to a “normal” life. After more than one year of lockdowns, curfews and various other restrictions, who wouldn’t want to blow off steam ? But if we really want to control the pandemic, to prevent as many deaths as possible and to finally allow healthcare workers to breathe, then it would be irresponsible to not make the return to our “old habits” slow and gradual.

The STJV is firmly advising all video game companies to :

  • Let workers choose, without justification, between working from home, at the office or any solution in between, at least through the summer and then depending on the epidemic situation ;
  • Keep all the required sanitary measures in place, in particular by setting a maximum threshold of people present, to limit contaminations at work as much as possible ;
  • Allow workers to get vaccinated during work hours, without penalties and therefore without forcing them to use time off and holidays, to remove as many obstacles to this vaccination as possible.

The STJV will keep watch over the following events, and especially over the video game industry’s companies’ behaviour. We are always available for anyone who may need our help, or who would have questions about their company situation or their own. Don’t hesitate to contact us at contact@stjv.fr

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