How should the employer comply with the obligation to provide personal hygiene products to employees?
Access to personal hygiene products should be ensured to every worker regardless of the position and form he employs. Employers who do not comply with this obligation are in violation of the labour code.
By means of a regulation on general health and safety regulations, the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy explains that the employer is obliged to provide personal hygiene products to the extent and quantity appropriate to the position performed and the degree of contamination of the body in connection with the work performed. This means that when employing employees who perform physical work, the employer has more obligations to them in terms of providing cleaning products than to office workers. However, this does not mean that employees in positions that do not cause dirt on the employer are exempt from this obligation. On the contrary, every employee has the right to wash his hands during the working day and in unlimited quantities.
The Labour Code and the unenanced implementing act do not regulate the type of personal hygiene measures that the employer is obliged to provide to employees. Therefore, he should establish the company’s standards himself and include them in the labour regulations or the employer’s order. As a general rule, it is not permissible to pay an allowance for the worker’s personal hygiene products.
For physical workers, it is necessary to issue traditional soap and towels. In turn, this is not necessary for administrative and office workers. In their case, the employer will fulfill the obligation in question by guaranteeing cleaning products, which each employee will be able to use in public sanitary and hygienic premises. This means washable soap dispensers at washbasins, paper or textile towels or hand dryers or toilet paper.
The obligation to provide workers with personal hygiene products is also a necessity for proper management and equipment of the hygiene and sanitary facilities, i.e.:
- rooms with showers,
- dining rooms with the exception of canteens,
- rest rooms,
- rooms for heating up employees,
- rooms for washing, disinfecting, drying and dusting work clothing and footwear and personal protective equipment.