France extends €900 help scheme for workers on short-term contracts

France extends €900 help scheme for workers on short-term contracts
French Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne. Photo: AFP
The economic aid scheme aimed at workers on short-term or temporary contracts will be extended until the end of May due to the ongoing Covid-19 health crisis, the French labour minister confirmed on Monday.

Elisabeth Borne told AFP in a press statement that it would be premature to end the scheme, which 400,000 people in France have benefited from, in February as planned.

“In light of the uncertainties linked to the evolution of the health situation and the current difficulties of the labour market, I wanted this help to be extended until the summer,” Borne said.

Workers who qualify for the scheme will therefore be able to receive up to €900 in government help for each of the months of March,  April and May.

Those who qualify for the scheme include;

  • Those who worked more than 138 days (60 percent) in 2019;
  • Of which at least 70 percent was on either CDD or intérim contracts; 
  • And who, due to the health crisis, were unable to work enough in 2020 to benefit from help schemes.

France’s economy has suffered big economic losses from the pandemic, undergoing two, strict national lockdowns in 2020 and several sectors still keeping closed as part of the health rules.

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The €900 poverty scheme was tailored to help workers in the tourism, restaurant and culture sector employed on short-term contracts, who often fell outside the categories covered by the emergency unemployment schemes in place.

“Those who worked a lot in 2019 but were on short contracts were severely penalised by the crisis,” the labour minister said.

The goal is to ensure that everyone has a minimum income of €900 a month, so how much economic support a person receives depends on their current revenue. If they earn €200 that month they will get €700, and so on.

“More than 400,000 people have already benefited from it for the months of November and December, including 165,000 young people under the age of 30,” Borne said.

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