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Putin announces countrywide ‘non-working days’ from October 30 to November 7

Source: Meduza

Against the backdrop of Russia reporting another daily coronavirus death record, President Vladimir Putin has announced that the country will have paid “non-working days” from Saturday, October 30 to Sunday, November 7. 

Putin made the announcement during a government meeting on Wednesday, October 20, which was broadcast by the state-owned television channel Russia 24. 

In practice, this decision will only affect three working days — November 1 to 3. November 4 is a national holiday in Russia (Unity Day) and November 5–7 is a long weekend.

However, regions facing more difficult epidemiological situations due to COVID-19 may announce non-working days beginning as early as this Saturday, October 23. Putin also warned that the non-working period may be extended beyond November 7.

In addition, Deputy Prime Minister Andrey Belousov said that the government is offering to compensate companies from affected industries with a one-time disbursement equivalent to one minimum-wage payment per employee. According to Belousov, this will cost the government 27 billion rubles ($380 million) and the payments will be made from November 15 to December 31. 

On Wednesday morning, Russia reported 1,028 coronavirus fatalities — breaking the record daily death toll set the day before. The country also recorded 34,073 new coronavirus cases. 

Due to the recent spike in COVID-19 cases, Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova proposed another “non-working” week during a meeting of the government’s anti-coronavirus coordination council on October 19. Russia first introduced non-working days at the start of the pandemic, for one week beginning on March 30, 2020. In the end, the non-working period was extended for a total of 42 days, lasting until May 11. A period of non-working days was announced once again during the May holidays in the spring of 2021. 

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