On June 24, 2022, the “Growing Together for the Integral Protection of First Infancy, Childhood and Adolescence Law” was published in the Official Gazette, repealing the “Special Law for the Regulation and Installation of Daycare Rooms for Employees’ Children.” It is worth mentioning that the repealed law was issued on May 2018, but, after multiple extensions, never entered into force.
The new law shall enter into force on January 1, 2023, and, amongst its provisions (Arts. 136 to 151), includes a new regime for the employers’ obligation to provide daycare rooms for their employees.
The most relevant provisions of the new regime are the following:
- All employers with 100 or more employees are obligated to provide the latter access to a First Infancy Attention Center (FIAC).
- The obligation covers all employees’ children from the end of the respective maternity leave until the day before they reach 4 years of age.
- The law provides three basic modalities for employers to comply with their obligation: a) install a FIAC directly, b) establish a common FIAC with other employers, or c) outsource the services.
- FIACs’ mandatory hours of operation only cover daytime shifts from Mondays through Fridays.
- The Ministry of Labor and Welfare is empowered with supervision of the compliance of this obligation, which violation can be sanctioned with a fine of up to 100 monthly minimum wages ($36,500.00).
BLP has ample experience advising national and international companies on labor matters in the Central American region.