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Steps to take before laying off your nanny during coronavirus lockdown

Readers Lounge By Lolita Bunde
Juggling between keeping the house clean and watching the kids can be an uphill task (Shutterstock)

With schools shut down and parents stuck with their children at home, parents are caught in a dilemma between keeping their nannies or letting them go during this pandemic period.

ALSO READ: How to socialize safely post-lockdown

Putting in mind that this virus is an unprecedented issue, for some, having a nanny in the house may be out of the cards at the moment as we strive to keep safe and flatten the infections curve.

Stuck between having your nanny to help with the chaos in the house or abiding by the COVID-19 social distancing regulations, here are steps you can follow before laying off your nanny:

Have a talk with your nanny

If your nanny stays in your house, it would be best to have a talk with them first before coming to a conclusion on whether to have them stay or leave for the period.

This is important as it helps determine whether they would be willing to quarantine with you or their families.

It is best they understand that during this period, they cannot have their usual off days to go visit their family and friends and still come back.

Share with them your concerns and explain to them that they can either stay with you or stay with their family until the situation is contained.

ALSO READ: A quick fix to your face mask fogging up your glasses

Help them understand that to help prevent the spread of the virus, people are expected to maintain social distance and avoid unnecessary movement.

Can you afford to keep a nanny?

Juggling between keeping the house clean and watching the kids can be an uphill task, especially when you are still expected to beat deadlines from work and have video-call meetings while at it.

To maintain order in the house and keep your children in check, you will obviously need an extra hand to help around the house.

Unfortunately, with the current situation, households are barely surviving and most people have had pay cuts thus having a nanny in the house doesn’t seem like a viable choice.

If you cannot afford to keep a nanny at this time, strike a deal with them.

To maintain order and keep the house clean, you may need extra hands (Shutterstock)

Depending on the kind of relationship you have with them, you can consider having an arrangement where they help you around the house until the situation gets better and you compensate them later.

ALSO READ: Four simple ways to get a new lease on life

This way they will know what to expect.

Not unless they decline your deal, be nice and let them go peacefully. They have needs too.

Send them on leave

This applies to mainly day-scholar nannies who come to clean or watch the children during the day.

Laying off your nanny or house help without proper communication would not be fair. If you find it necessary to let them go, at least send them on paid leave. This way they can also take care of their families while keeping safe.

In case you absolutely need a nanny, you can work out a new schedule that is suitable for your house and the nanny.

For instance, instead of dropping in daily to clean the house, they can come weekly and clean while you watch the kids all week long. This routine can work so long as you explain and they understand the need for them to be safe while away from your home.

Also, as the employer, you need to provide your nannies with sanitizers, gloves and masks to ensure they are following the health guidelines.

However, if letting them go is the only option, you can explain to them the circumstances and lay them off till further notice. You don’t have to burn all your bridges and ruin your relationship with your nanny when you will need them back after the lockdown.

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