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The UĦM is reporting that employees working on a shift basis are being told they will not benefit from an extra day of leave this year in compensation for workdays falling on a public holiday, despite Cabinet’s approval of the measure last December.

The legal measure is an amendment of the National Holidays and Other Public Holidays Act, reversing another amendment passed in 2005. Once Parliament signs off on the measure, every public holiday falling on a Saturday or Sunday will be added to workers’ annual leave.

However, reports have emerged of shift workers being told by their employers that this measure will not impact them.

For some workers, this may mean that they will lose out on all three public holidays falling on a weekend in 2021.

According to the UĦM, the Department of Employment and Industrial Relations (DIER) is interpreting the leave rules in such a way that some might get as little as 192 hours of leave in 2021, whereas those getting all three additional days will be entitled to 216 hours of leave.

The union said it had seen correspondence confirming the DIER position.

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