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A Reprieve for Job Seekers and Employees


A Reprieve for Job Seekers and Employees

April 5, 2022
8 min read

On 4th April 2022, President Uhuru Kenyatta signed five parliamentary bills, including the 2019 Employment (Amendment) Bill. Other bills presented by Solicitor General Kennedy Ogutu to the President include the 2021 Copyright (Amendment) Bill, the 2020 Deposit Insurance (Amendment) Bill, and the 2022 Industrial Training (Amendment) Bill.

What does the 2019 Employment (Amendment) Bill has in store for job seekers in Kenya? Well, over a long time, the employer has required potential employees and applicants to provide clearance certificates from various agencies such as the Credit and Reference Bureau (CRB), Directorate of Criminal Investigation (DCI), and Higher Education Loans Board (HELB).

The new Employment Act requires employers to only seek clearance certificates upon granting an offer of employment to a prospective employee. It’s is a reprieve for job seekers.

The bill proposed by a member of parliament, Gideon Keter, also intends to address increased employee burnout and promote work-life balance. Generally, the bill stipulates that an employer should not contact their employee outside of contractual working hours except for workplace emergencies. In case the employee chooses to respond, he\she ought to be compensated. Conversely, if an employee decides not to respond to out-of-hours communication, they shouldn’t be penalized.

However, this bill excludes the right to disconnect for service providers (as prescribed under Section 81 of the Labour Relations Act 2007).
This rule is not new in the global space, where international best practices are of interest. Countries such as Portugal, Ireland, and Belgium have already implemented similar labour relations rules.

Take advantage of the new job opportunities here.

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