Second division soccer team VfL Osnabrück wants to motivate its employees to be more sustainable. There is a voluntary clause in contracts for this.
Some companies have now recognized that climate change is the biggest and most pressing crisis of our time. Some try to motivate their employees to behave in more environmentally friendly ways – which of course should not exempt companies from taking the climate into account in their business decisions.
The VfL Osnabrück football club wants to offer its employees financial incentives to protect the climate. There is a so-called “common good clause” in the contracts for this: employees with such a clause in the contract receive up to 750 euros more in salary annually. Compensation for the CO2 footprint of the commute is then deducted from this, which is calculated in collaboration with a non-profit organization. So if you leave your car at home more often to go to work, you can earn more.
VfL Osnabrück: Common good clause in contracts is voluntary
Michael Welling, managing director of the second division soccer team, emphasizes that the clause is voluntary. “We will not hire any potential employee if they do not sign the clause. And: No employee who has the clause will ultimately be worse off financially than an employee without a clause,” he made it clear to the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung”. . There is therefore no risk of being punished financially if you do not behave in a sufficiently climate-friendly manner.
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The employer records the CO2 emissions caused by the commute, and further information about the employees’ private lives – for example about their dietary habits – is voluntary. The association wants to “raise awareness and promote dealing with the topic,” explains managing director Welling. According to VfL, the clause was integrated into 40 contracts at the start of the season in August. Last season, 7,000 euros were compensated.
The common good clause is in the contracts of some players as well as in the working papers of normal employees of the club. Michael Welling is calm about criticism from labor lawyers who argue that such a paragraph would not withstand a lawsuit before a labor court. Since the clause is voluntary, he doesn’t fear any problems, he told the “Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung”.
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