On 22 June 2022, BusinessTech posted an article relating to recent discussions between South Africa’s Labour Unions and the Government to equalise the national minimum wage across sectors in South Africa. We can only assume this is prompted by the recent changes to South Africa’s minimum wage for 2022 (Government Gazette No. 45882 of 07 February 2022), where a new national minimum wage of R 23.19 for each ordinary hour worked was announced.
Of particular importance is that domestic workers are now entitled to the same minimum wage as farm workers (where as in 2021 farm workers were entitled to R 21.69 per hour and domestic workers were entitled to R 19.09 per hour).
The National Minimum Wage Act, No 9 of 2018 (as amended), requires the National Minimum Wage Commission to review the rates on an annual basis and make recommendations to the Minister on any changes to the national minimum wage, while also taking into account alternative viewpoints, including those of the general public.
However, the latest change to national minimum wage still sees workers employed on an expanded public works program only being entitled to a minimum wage of R 12.75 per hour and Workers who have concluded learnership agreements contemplated in section 17 of the Skills Development Act, 1998 (Act No 97 of 1998), are entitled to allowances contained in schedule 2 as published in Government Gazette No. 45882 of 07 February 2022.
While the amounts for expanded public works program employees and learnerships have increased, it is still lower than farm and domestic workers and leaves much room for improvement.
Given the economic position of South Africans, including the spiralling increases in fuel prices in which the average price per liter is quickly surpassing South Africa’s hourly minimum wage, there is clearly a need for serious discussions between Labour Unions and Government to equalise minimum wage across all sectors, ahead of the formal changes to the national minimum wage set for 2023.
While it seems that we are heading in the right direction, the need for equalisation of the national minimum wage is only becoming more necessary in the current economic climate.
We will continue to bring updates as this progresses.
#nationalwageact #minimumwage #labourlaw #fairpay #warnings #thomsonwilksattorneys #thomsonwilksinc