Nightview of Vittorio Emanuele II gallery and the cathedral in Piazza Duomo, Milan, Italy

In light of the surge of new cases of Covid-19, on 8 March 2020 the Italian Government enacted a number of incisive, restrictive measures in the attempt to contain the spread of the virus. Below is a summary of the new provision that are already in force.

1. Measures applicable to the so-called “Orange Zone,” currently covering the entire Region of Lombardia (where Milan is located) plus the provinces of Modena, Parma, Piacenza, Reggio Emilia, Rimini, Pesaro e Urbino, Venice, Padova, Treviso, Asti, Vercelli, Novara, Verbano Cusio Ossola and Alessandria:

  • Only in the presence of one of the following reasons may individuals move in and out of the Orange Zone and within the Orange Zone:
    • for proven working-related reasons (the Ministry of Internal Affairs has made available a self-certification form that anyone moving for work will have to have with them at all times and show to the Police or other Public Authority when asked. We recommend that employers issue a letter to workforce, to further confirm the reasons why the employee is moving within the Zone);
    • in case of need;
    • for reasons related to health;
    • to return to one’s place of residence or domicile.
  • Use of audio-video for meetings wherever possible.
  • On weekends and holidays, all medium-size and large-size stores, as well as malls, shopping centres and markets, shall close.
  • Restaurants and bars can open between 6 am and 6 pm; owners/managers must ensure that there is sufficient space between customers, with a minimum limit set at 1 metre between one another.
  • Previously enacted decrees are superseded by the above provisions.

2. Measures applicable to the entire territory of the Republic of Italy:

  • Smart-working must be used whenever possible, via the simplified rules currently in place (see more in our previous newsletters here and here).
  • If employees cannot work from home, employers are asked to encourage the use of holidays and paid permits. In addition, qualifying companies may access a special social shock absorber or agree on a period of unpaid leave with each concerned employee.
  • All conferences and business events are postponed till after 3 April 2020.
  • All other events (including those that take place in privately owned venues), cinemas, theatres, museums are suspended and closed.
  • Pubs, dance clubs, discos, game rooms and similar are closed.
  • In stores, restaurants and bars, the owner/manager must ensure that no crowds form and that there is sufficient space between customers, with a minimum limit set at 1 metre between one another.

Each region of Italy may adopt additional measures.

3. Social shock absorber available in the Region of Emilia Romagna: (info, in Italian, here).

  • The measure (funded up to certain amount) is available on a retroactive basis from 23 February 2020;
  • Maximum duration: 1 month;
  • Employers active in the private sector, who are located in the Region of Emilia-Romagna and who do not have access to other social shock absorbers may apply;
  • Beneficiaries: all employees active as of 23 February 2020 and whose working activity is suspended or reduced on account of restrictive measures in force.

4. Additional clarifications issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs:

  • The movement of individuals is permitted as long as justified by work-related reasons.
  • Cross-border workers will continue to be able to reach their place of work, provided they are not ill or in quarantine; they will need to be able to prove the reason why they are moving with any means when asked by the Police or other Public Authority.
  • No restrictions on the movement of goods are currently in place. Delivery of merchandise is considered working activity: drivers may collect or deliver goods in the restricted areas, by entering and exiting said areas for this sole purpose.
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