Now the federal government will work on an Official Mexican Standard to establish the new obligations; has a period of up to 18 months
January 12, 2021
This Tuesday the reform on teleworking or home office comes into force. The changes to article 311 of the Federal Labor Law were approved in the Senate on December 9 and published this Monday in the Official Gazette of the Federation (DOF).
Precisely, the great protagonist of the reform is remote work, a term that has become popular in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although it is not exactly a new work modality, with the changes in the legislation it acquired a new level of importance and dignity: now employers are obliged to pay their workers for the use of the internet, the electricity service and the computer equipment used to carry out their work.
The new stipulations would take up to 18 months to finish being applied since it is the period that the national government has to make an Official Mexican Standard that establishes the new obligations as a mandate.
What does the reform consist of?
“The working person under the teleworking modality will be the one who provides their personal, paid and subordinate services in a place other than the company’s facilities or employer’s source of work and uses information and communication technologies”, establishes Article 330 -A of the added Chapter XII Bis.
Thus, the initiative considers as “special obligations” the provision, installation, and maintenance of the necessary equipment; assume the costs derived from the telecommunications and electricity services, and implement mechanisms to preserve the security of information and data.
The conditions that this labor modality entails for employers will be:
– Provide, install and take care of the maintenance of the necessary equipment for teleworking such as computers, ergonomic chairs, or printers.
-Receive the work in a timely manner and pay wages in the manner and dates stipulated.
– Assume the costs derived from teleworking, including the payment of telecommunication services and the proportional part of electricity.
-Keep a record of the inputs delivered to workers under the telework modality.
-Implement mechanisms that preserve the security of information and data used by people who do telework.
-Respect the right to disconnection of people who telework at the end of the working day.
-Register people who work remotely in the mandatory social security scheme.
-Establish the necessary training and advisory mechanisms to guarantee the adaptation, learning and adequate use of information technologies, especially for those who change from face-to-face to teleworking.
While Home office workers are obliged to:
-Take the greatest care in the storage and conservation of equipment, materials, and supplies that they receive from the employer.
– Provide timely information on the agreed costs for the use of telecommunications services and electricity consumption.
– Obey and behave in accordance with the provisions on safety and health at work established by the employer.
– Attend and use the mechanisms and operating systems for the supervision of their activities.
– Attend the data protection policies and mechanisms used in the performance of their activities, as well as the restrictions on their use and storage.
“The provisions of this Chapter shall be governed by labor relations that take place more than forty percent of the time at the home of the worker under the teleworking modality, or at the home chosen by the latter. Telework that is carried out occasionally or sporadically will not be considered telework”, States the law.
The home office is not possible for everyone in Mexico
Since the confinement for COVID-19 began, the obstacles that many Mexicans face in order to carry out their work under this modality have been exposed.
A survey conducted by The Wellness and Productivity Project among 1,039 people, 81% of whom are between 20 and 49 years old, revealed that 41% of workers in Mexico who emigrated to telecommuting due to the epidemic work longer hours and stay longer connected for work reasons.
On the other hand, the study found that not all Mexicans have been fortunate enough to be able to keep their jobs under this model. And it is that people who live in poverty, mainly young people, the “home office” is simply not possible, among other reasons, because in many homes there is no computer or internet access, in addition to space limitations. In many cases, it is also said that the devices must be shared between several members of the household.