The São Paulo Labor Court has authorized the collective dismissal, without prior negotiations, of 255 workers at the Fogo de Chao meat restaurant due to the economic effects of the pandemic. The shutdown began in March of last year.
Last Tuesday (20) the decision of 7th Labor Court Judge Juliana Petnat Salles was issued. The judge also rejected requests to return the individuals to the restaurant’s staff.
According to the complaint filed by the Ministry of Public Labor (MPT), the restaurant company had implemented mass layoffs of workers in March 2020, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Initially, the agency stated that the company was not going to pay severance payments to the group, which was implemented throughout the process.
As the judge noted in the lawsuit, since the 2017 labor reform, labor law does not require that collective dismissals be negotiated beforehand. “It is true that the doctrine and legal jurisprudence of the homelands direct severe criticism to the aforementioned legal provision, as the setback represented by this standard is undeniable and reprehensible and its provisions are subject to the insufficient working group by removing the above unified logic, starting with the justice system and the work in force at that time.” , justified.
When analyzing MPT’s request to return and pay moral damages to a group of employees, the judge assessed that the restaurant had been severely affected by the economic crisis imposed by the covid-19 pandemic. “In this context, it is clear that the prevailing economic activity developed by the defendants, and therefore, the daily work of the employees who worked in these institutions was suddenly and doubly affected as of March 2020,” he said.
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