Testing in the construction and cleaning sector


This is the question that preoccupies companies since the recovery of the corona virus infections. How to manage the return from holidays in coronavirus risk areas? Within the framework of the Luxembourg test strategy, the end of the collective holiday and the concomitant resumption of activities in certain sectors (construction sector and cleaning sector) have been identified by the Directorate of Health as a key moment to detect and control the spread of the virus in the population.

The Health Directorate, professional federations and professional chambers are working together to implement this testing strategy.

In line with the strategy pursued since the introduction of large-scale testing, it is not envisaged that every employee returning from holiday will be tested, but that a certain percentage of people will be tested in order to identify infections present within a company and the sector.

In terms of practical organisation, each company will receive a first set of vouchers for the week of 17 August with codes that correspond to a certain percentage of the company’s staff. Companies will receive a second set of codes for the week of 24 August. The codes will be valid for a fortnight. The tests can be done at all large-scale testing centres. The results of the first two weeks’ tests will be used to assess whether additional codes should be sent to companies.

The employer, who knows the organisational structures and work processes within his company, chooses which employees are invited to be tested on the basis of social interactions between employees. Thus, when several employees work, for example, in a team, several members of the team may be tested in the first week, while other members of the same team will be tested in the second week. This approach ensures continuous monitoring of each team over several weeks. This is a real advantage compared to testing all employees of a company on the same day.

These vouchers represent personal invitations to be used by the company’s own staff, as well as for temporary workers integrated into the different teams.

Practical approach at company level in the sectors concerned

As not all employees can be tested, companies are invited to identify as soon as possible, and ideally before the start of the collective holiday, those employees they believe to be particularly at risk of contagion. In particular, they may give preference to employees who are in regular contact with colleagues or customers over employees who are more isolated or even teleworking.

As the tests are voluntary, the employer cannot force the employee to undergo such a test, nor can he or she know the result of the test. In case of a positive test, the employee will be isolated anyway and the company will receive a certificate of incapacity for work for the period of isolation.

It is therefore important that companies inform the employees concerned that they want to test them as a matter of priority and obtain their agreement to be tested, so as not to let tests reserved for the construction or cleaning sectors lapse.

The basic principle of registration for the test is that it is done by the employee concerned. However, in order to ensure that registration can be carried out online and that taking the test causes the least possible disruption to the organisation of the company, it is proposed that companies should carry out the test registration on behalf of their employees with the latter’s agreement.

Independently of this screening, the employees are always invited to scrupulously respect the barrier gestures set up by the companies, the main effective barrier gestures against the contagion of the coronavirus being

  • respecting physical distances ;
  • wearing a mask or other device covering the nose and mouth;
  • regular hand washing;
  • use of a single-use handkerchief;
  • coughing or sneezing into one’s mouth.

For further information, please contact the secretariat of your federation.