The Financial Institute Employees Union of Nepal (FIEUN) recently expressed their grave concerns in a press release regarding the Covid-19’s economic fallout on workers in the finance sector. In the release, the FIEUN paid tribute to the business management who have endeavoured to maintain the service and service conditions of their employees. However, there are a number of businesses who are heading the opposite direction and cutting off the jobs of their workers.
The FIEUN made a number of key demands which are highlighted below:
- Provide insurance covering Covid-19 infections for all employees of banks and financial institutions as well as for their family members.
- To reinstate the employees who are not taken back while the institutions are resuming office operations.
- Provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) for workers including those working in microfinance institutions who must encounter customers in the field in collecting deposits etc.
- All the regulatory bodies in the finance industry namely Central Bank, Insurance Board and Securities Board must provide clear instructions to all operators to maintain government guidelines in protecting the jobs of employees.
- To provide medical access such as Covid-19 testing for employees of financial institutions who have been performing crucial delivery services of documents during the pandemic.
- The Government of Nepal must consider in their budget deliberations to develop programs addressing the security of the overall financial sector and the protection of employees’ rights in the sector. The Government also needs to develop a blueprint in consultation and agreement with trade unions for the short, medium to long term reforms of the sector in view of the expected impact from the Covid-19 fallout.
UNI Apro Regional Secretary, Rajendra Acharya, said, “We are very much in support and express our solidarity to the FIEUN demands during this trying times. We urge all stakeholders in the sector to come together more collaboratively to prepare for the challenging days ahead.”