On April 7, the Spanish government approved urgent measures to facilitate the temporary hiring of workers in the agricultural sector, namely people who are unemployed or whose jobs have been temporarily suspended. This will allow them to receive their unemployment benefits and any other public subsidies while carrying out seasonal work in the field until June 30.
Immigrants whose residence permit expires between March 14 and June 30, as well as young foreigners between the ages of 18 and 21 who have a regularized status are also authorized to perform these jobs.
Another requirement, as stated in the royal decree law, is that the candidates' homes are close to the places where their work will be carried out, and that the employer ensures the availability of appropriate means of protection against COVID-19.
However, those affected by a force majeure ERTE, directly linked to the coronavirus, will not have the chance of making unemployment compatible with temporary work.
With these measures, the Government is trying to deal with the shortage of labor in the field caused by the closure of borders of countries like Morocco, and guarantee the supply of food at a time when it is essential. The lower influx of seasonal immigrants has taken a clear toll in the strawberry, stone fruit and summer crop (tomato, lettuce, zucchini, eggplant, pepper and carrot) sectors.