Lack of compliance is rife as employers continue to ignore labour laws

The passing of three pieces of labour legislation, including the national minimum wage, by Parliament on Tuesday, has seen various conflicting views about the laws.

The South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) has condemned the introduction of the R20 per hour minimum calling it a 'slave wage'.

The DA has rejected the idea of a universal minimum wage, suggesting that each sector should have its own minimum wage.

Labour lawyer and DA MP Michael Bagraim says the only way to avoid job losses is to regulate each sector on its own merit.

Read: 1 MILLION job losses predicted under new minimum wage laws

We already have sectoral determinations and we need to ensure we have as little job losses as possible and the only way to do that is to look at each sector and ask what is tolerable within that sector without causing employers to retrench.

Michael Bagraim, Labour lawyer and DA MP

Bargraim says the introduction of a minimum wage is troublesome to small businesses and even when they apply for an exemption, it is a tedious process.

People either just don't pay it or just go on and retrench...

Michael Bagraim, Labour lawyer and DA MP

We know that people don't follow the labour law, so to make it more complicated is not going to solve the problem and the only way we are going to solve the problem in South Africa is to create more jobs.

Michael Bagraim, Labour lawyer and DA MP

Legal advisor for Domestic Workers Advocacy Forum, Lumka Phendla says the current labour system is like modern day slavery because a lot of employers don't adhere to the regulations.

Phendla says organisations such as theirs could help government ensure that there is compliance from employers, especially when it comes to domestic workers.

We need people who will help enforcing these laws. Making new laws will not help if they are not enforced.

Lumka Phendla, Legal advisor for Domestic Workers Advocacy Forum

To hear the rest of the interviews on labour legislation, listen below:


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