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Dominican Republic Reconsidering Moveable Public Holidays

Source: El Nuevo Diario (Santo Domingo)
Posted: Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Updated: Wednesday, August 2, 2017


Dominican Republic legislator, Radhamés Castro (Partido Popular Cristiano), has introduced a bill that would put an end to the practice of moving mid-week public holidays to the nearest Monday.

The practice of moving mid-week public holidays to the nearest Monday dates from the 1997 law, named "Ley No. 139-97 mediante la cual los días feriados del calendario que coincidan con los días martes y miércoles, jueves o viernes serán trasladados de fecha" (1997-06-19), which was based on the so-called Emiliani Law (2005-10-02), and is regularly and fiercely attacked (2009-11-22 and 2008-05-24) by many who think that moving religious holidays is blaspheme, while the move of historical national holidays is unpatriotic.

One such attack, via the courts, resulted in the Dominican Republic's Supreme Court declaring as unconstitutional, the move of the August 16 Restoration Day public holiday to the following Monday, whenever it falls on a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday (2008-02-21).

Today's announcement, though, uses a novel argument, that the practice of moving mid-week public holidays to the nearest Monday promotes laziness (la ley [No. 139-97] promueve la vagancia). This argument is based on the recent Día de Reyes public holiday which was moved from Tuesday, January 6, 2010, to Monday, January 5, 2010. But deputy Castro claims that most people took both days, the Monday and the Tuesday, as public holidays anyways.



Links and References


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