It was easy. The aim was to report on three data: the total number of temporary employment regulation files (ERTE) submitted by companies to the authorities of the autonomous communities and to the Ministry of Labor itself; the total number of workers affected by these ERTEs, and how many of these employees affected by an adjustment had already been recognized by the State Employment Service (SEPE) as unemployment benefits. However, the press conference given yesterday by the Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, was the closest thing to a dialogue for the deaf in which the minister’s responses to the journalists’ telematic questions were somewhat messy.
Thus, finally, after the pertinent subsequent clarifications, only some of the requested data became clear. Díaz reported the existence of 246,235 ERTE presented by the majority of autonomies to their labor authorities. Likewise, there are 9,670 other files presented by the same number of companies directly to the state labor authority – although of this amount, the ministry returned 4,150 to the communities, considering that they were of autonomous jurisdiction. The companies that operate in a single community present the ERTE in their autonomy and those that are in more than one, before the Ministry of Labor.
That said, Díaz reiterated that, as a result of all these regional and state ERTEs, the SEPE would have recognized 620,000 workers affected by these adjustments as unemployment benefits as of yesterday. This is the help that workers receive while their employment is suspended. Although he only spoke of the benefits already recognized, not of all the workers affected by the ERTE applications.
But how many workers are affected by an ERTE? Well, it is not yet known. Díaz said that he could not contribute the global data of ERTE presented nor of affected workers because “not all communities cooperate and send us their data.” In fact, he assured that he only had the data for the Basque Country, Cantabria, the Balearic Islands, Castilla-La Mancha, Madrid, Valencia, Aragon, Castilla y León, Catalonia, La Rioja, Navarra and Asturias. Thus, according to what has been said, the figures provided yesterday would not include data from communities as relevant as Andalusia, the Canary Islands, Murcia, Galicia or Extremadura.
For all this, adding all the workers affected by the temporary regulation files communicated to the Ministry of Labor – and not only those who have already recognized their benefit – plus those of the communities that, according to Díaz, do not provide statistics, different sources encrypted the total number of possible affected between 2.5 and three million.