To Fight Coronavirus, Working Hours’ Schedule of the Government Agencies Changes

The Independent Administrative Reform and Civil Service Commission (IARCSC), in order to fight the spread of the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) and to employ better precautious measures for civil servants, contract-based staff and citizens visiting civil service agencies, has introduced a procedure which reduces the working hours in the civil service agencies by three hours.

The procedure was proposed by the IARCSC and approved by The Cabinet of the Government of Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. The procedure is effective from today (22nd March) in all ministries and government agencies, in the centre and provinces, with the exception of the Ministry of Public Health.

Key points of the procedure are as follows:

Working hours for planned activities begin at 08:00 AM and ends at 01:00 PM, without break. The ministries and government agencies are required to coordinate staggered shifts for staff who are assigned essential work–first shift from 08:00 AM to 01:00 PM and second shift from 02:00 PM to 05:00 PM. Essential work staff who have signature authority are required to be present in the office for in time service delivery.

In order to avoid congestion in the workplace, the agencies are required to adjust distance between employees in a workroom to a meter’s distance, and to avoid organizing non-essential meetings. Employees are required to maintain a meter’s distance between one another while exiting the offices, and avoid gathering in one place. Ministries and government agencies should arrange their meetingse through videoconferences, voice calls and other available means, as much as possibl.

Employees aged 58 to 65, pregnant employees and female employees with children in public kindergartens, are put on a month long leave, should the need arise for their services, they will remotely work from home.

In cities where the COVID-19 disease outbreak is confirmed by the Ministry of Public Health, ministries and government agencies are required to put those of their staff on a month long leave whose presence at the office is not of urgent need.

If the disease’s outbreak situation changes, at the suggestion of the Ministry of Public Health, the agencies will be shut down until further notice.

For more details please see the Procedure on Scheduling Work Hours to Prevent Outbreak of COVID-19 Disease (Coronavirus) in the Civil Service Agencies.