Judge Mirella Cahú, from the 4th Labor Court of João Pessoa, sentenced a company for sending messages containing work demands to an employee who was away from work for treatment after being infected by Covid-19. According to the decision, the company was ordered to pay compensation for moral damages in the amount of R$8,000.
The records state that, in November 2020, the worker tested positive for the coronavirus. In the messages sent by the hierarchical superior, in addition to information about the symptoms, questions were also sent to the worker about work demands, going so far as to ask him to “get up soon”, as well as follow up on a certain activity and “keep me updated ”.
For the judge, rest, necessary in situations of illness, cannot be removed, even by sending messages. “It turns out that, despite there being no physical presence of the worker, the need to read messages and the flow of their requests imply activation of the worker as if they were actually working”, he highlighted, adding that, in this case, it is a case of “inappropriate conduct in the organization of work that should prioritize the disconnection of sick workers so that they can fully recover their health”.
Judge Mirella Cahú also emphasizes that the provision of the right to compensation for extra-patrimonial damages constitutes a guarantee and achievement of the dignity of the human person, who can no longer have their physical and mental freedom and intangibility restricted. For the judge, the value of the compensation takes into account the punitive and educational nature of the application of the sentence, “noting that the violated sphere of law will never be fully repaired by pecuniary expressions to the extent that the completeness of the damage is only mitigated by the feeling of punishment for the offender.”