Religion Magazine

Law Proposal: Due to DST, Religious Employees Can Be Tardy

By Gldmeier @gldmeier

Either my solution was obvious to everyone, or Deputy Minister of Religious Affairs Rav Eli Ben-Dahan reads Life in Israel.. I proposed a couple of days ago that in light of the problem the new DST law will present to religious employees in the second half of October, perhaps Bituach Leumi should cover the wages of such employees who need time to daven that will take away from their work time.
Dahan is now proposing a new law that is meant to fix the problem caused by the DST law. Dahan's law will allow affected workers to come late to work in the last two weeks of October, and that the government will foot the bill.
The article in NRG announcing the law proposal does not specify where the money will come from, but it does say the government will pay for it. The Kipa article on this just says employees won't lose money because of it, but does not specify who will pay. I hope it won't be the employer, because that might become a threat to religious employees, as employers will refrain from hiring religious employees or might even fire them.
It's an ok adjustment - it solve some of the problem, but presents some new problems of its own. I am not sure an additional law is justified for these two-three weeks, or if employees should just be left to figure out their own solutions to daven and get to work..
The Good:
Employers won't feel threatened or as the losers in this deal. Employees will be able to daven if they want to without their jobs being threatened.
The Bad:
Some employees might take advantage just to come to work late. I dont want to say that davening employees should have to bring a note from the shul gabbai to affirm that they attended services, but this could be a problem.
Another problem is that some employers might feel a loss of productivity -with a percentage, sometimes perhaps a significant percentage, of their employees coming in late. It is only for about 2 or 3 weeks, so it is not a permanent loss of productivity. As well, few employees are productive consistently throughout the day so 20-30 minutes (though it could become more when taking into account public transportation schedules) of less productivity might not be such an insurmountable problem.

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