Istanbul adopts alternate working hours to curb Covid-19

Turkey’s biggest city of Istanbul has adopted alternate working hours for public employees to curb the spread of Covid-19 in the wake of the increasing number of daily cases, Governor Ali Yerlikaya announced.

Addressing a press conference on Friday, Yerlikaya said the new program aimed to reduce the crowd on public transport during rush hours to restrain the contamination risk, reports Xinhua news agency.

He noted that under the new program, police, gendarmerie, and coast guard officers will have their shifts start at 7 a.m., while municipality workers at 8 a.m. and health workers at 8.30 a.m.

All other public employees will work between 9 a.m to 4.30 p.m.

The Governor emphasized that the alternate and flexible working hours would also be adopted for the private sectors as well after finalizing the details.

In Istanbul, with a population of over 16 million, there are 5.5 million public employees, he said, adding that currently, 4.1 million people are using public transport each day.

This number was previously 7.5 million before the pandemic, according to Yerlikaya.

As of Saturday, Turkey has registered 299,810 coronavirus cases and 7,377 deaths.