Spanish workers have just won the right to receive a free Christmas Hamper from their employers.
The long established tradition of giving workers a ‘cesta’ to take home at Christmas containing cured meats, wine, olive oil, luxury tinned products and sweets like as Turrón and Polverones is a treat that employees have come to expect at Christmas time. In fact, the cesta is such a tradition in Spain that at some companies it is written into the Union contract and workers have just won a court case arguing that it is not an employers act of generosity – but a right that should be awarded to all employees.
The Ruling On The Cesta
In a ruling made public last week, Spain’s Supreme Court declared Fujitsu Technology Spain had been wrong to cancel this seasonal perk in 2013 as Spain struggled in the economic crisis. The ruling stated that Fujitsu’s decision to suspend the traditional cesta could be allowed in the context of a one-off emergency austerity measure – but should not have been indefinitely suspended. Furthermore, the ruling said that the tradition of the Christmas Hamper was so longstanding that employees had come to expect it, meaning it had become an acquired right and had become “a beneficial condition of the labour contract that cannot be considered merely an act of generosity on the part of the company”.
Since Fujitsu Spain was founded in 1973, the company had been delivering Christmas Hampers each year since – with the exception of 1997, when they handed out vouchers to staff instead. Workers Unions had accepted the one-off measure in 2013, but complained in following years when the ‘cesta‘ failed to appear. Therefore the Supreme Court last week ordered Fujitsu to deliver an extra compensation hamper to its 1,600 workers for 2020 – meaning employees can expect to receive 2 ‘cestas‘ this year!
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