Volunteers in the emergency services in the framework of the National Civil Protection Service, communal fire and rescue services and accredited rescue organisations may benefit from special leave to carry out these activities properly.
Furthermore, in the event of emergencies, members of fire brigades or volunteers in the Civil Protection Service are exempt from their professional obligations.
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- Congé spécial pour les cadres des services de secours
- Congé spécial pour cadres des services de secours - déclaration de remboursement
- Congé spécial pour volontaires des services de secours
Persons carrying out a professional activity as a salaried worker (in the public or private sector) or self-employed workers have the right to special leave for volunteers, if they, in the field of emergency services:
- take a training course;
- have representation duties abroad;
- are responsible for organising the training courses and training the instructor.
The following executives or members of the managerial staff of emergency service units may also benefit from special leave:
- heads of intervention centres and deputy heads;
- group leaders and their deputy group leaders;
- chiefs of fire brigades and their deputy chiefs;
- general inspectors;
- regional inspectors and deputy regional inspectors from the fire and rescue departments;
- members of the executive committee;
- members of the commission of young firefighters.
The employer or, where applicable, the self-employed worker shall be reimbursed according to the provisions in place for special leave for emergency services volunteers.
Volunteers taking part in humanitarian missions in the context of emergency response teams are also entitled to special leave for humanitarian missions outside of Luxembourg, in the event of serious disasters, and by order of the Government.
Eligible training activities
The following are eligible:
- training courses for:
- fire brigades;
- first aid, ambulance and rescue personnel;
- early warning and response teams;
- professional diving teams;
- radiation protection units;
- teams dealing with pollution by chemical products;
- canine units;
- psychological support groups;
- emergency response teams dealing with humanitarian missions abroad;
- continuous learning and advanced training courses;
- training courses for instructors in the abovementioned fields and rescue services;
- training courses for employees designated by the employer to implement first aid, fire fighting and staff evacuation measures;
- training courses for instructors of young firefighters;
- training courses for inspectors.
Eligible representation duties
This involves representation activities abroad for technical directors and advisors:
- of the National Federation of Fire Brigades;
- of the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency;
- of accredited organisations;
- any person designated by the Minister for Home Affairs (Ministre de l'Intérieur).
To benefit from leave for emergency services volunteers, the persons concerned must take part in national or international events approved in advance by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
Duration of the special leave
The special leave for volunteers in fire, emergency and rescue services:
- may not exceed 7 working days per year nor exceed, for each beneficiary, 42 working days in total (this total amount does not apply to supply teachers nor to the managing staff of emergency services entitled to this type of leave);
- may be split up, each fraction being a minimum of 4 hours;
- volunteers who take part in humanitarian missions as part of an emergency response team are not subject to duration limits.
Special leave is considered to be an effective period of work, and as such:
- may not be deducted from annual recreational leave;
- must be taken into consideration when calculating the days of annual leave.
During his special leave, the employee continues to benefit from the provisions regarding labour protection and social security.
Application for special leave
The application for special leave to attend training courses or as a representative in the field of emergency services must be submitted to the following bodies:
- for volunteers in the Civil Protection Services: send the application for special leave to the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency at least one month before the beginning of the leave;
- for volunteer firefighters: contact the commune concerned.
Once the request is accepted by the competent administration, the employee must hand his application to his employer who can decide to postpone it if the leave of absence may have a negative impact on the business, the administration or the public service, or on the planning of paid annual leave for the staff.
Moreover, unless the employer agrees to it, special leave cannot be taken immediately after recreational leave or sick leave, if this should entail a continuous absence of the employee exceeding the total duration of his annual leave.
Application for special leave for emergency services executives
The application for special leave must be submitted to the following administrative bodies:
- for emergency services executives: the application for special leave must be sent to the director of the Administration des Services de Secours - ASS (Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency).
- for the chiefs of fire brigades and their deputy chiefs; the application should be sent directly to the mayor of the commune concerned by using the form provided by the communal administration.
The application must be signed by the mayor as far as chiefs of fire brigades and their deputies are concerned, and by the director of the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency for all other executives. The form will be returned to the applicant who must submit it to his employer.
If the mandate opening the right to special leave begins or ends during the year, the amount of special leave granted is calculated in proportion to the duration of the mandate in said year.
Compensatory allowances during special leave
During the period of special leave:
- public and private sector employees will continue to receive their salary and benefit from the advantages related to their position;
- persons carrying out an independent professional activity will receive a compensatory allowance set at twice the amount of the social minimum wage for skilled workers (i.e. EUR 26.68 per hour as of 1 August 2016). The payment of the allowance is limited to 8 hours per day and only applies to working days;
- volunteers with no profession may receive compensation for their activities amounting to twice the amount of the social minimum wage for skilled workers (i.e. EUR 26.68 per hour as of 1 August 2016). Payment of the compensation is limited to 8 hours per day and only applies to working days.
The State covers the costs of special leave for the following volunteers:
- volunteers of the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency;
- managers of the National Federation of Fire Brigades;
- instructors and members of the fire and rescue department of the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency;
For volunteers in the fire and rescue services, the costs for special leave for volunteers are covered by the commune concerned.
The application for reimbursement must be presented by the employer/self-employed worker, depending on the case, either to the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency or to the commune concerned, at the latest by 15 January of the year following the year for which the reimbursement is requested.
Emergency services executives must submit a specific application for reimbursement every 3, 6 or 12 months.
All other emergency services volunteers must submit their declaration on a form that they receive from the Luxembourg Rescue Services Agency or the communal board of the commune concerned.
The employee must submit the form to his employer, who completes and signs the declaration and the application for reimbursement. The accuracy of the information on the form is certified by the signature of the person concerned.
The self-employed worker completes the form, signs the declaration and the application for reimbursement himself.
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