Why are few companies applying for UIF's COVID-19 relief?
Last month Government announced that the Unemployment Insurance Fund would help mitigate the impact of the 21-day national lockdown on workers, business and economy through the COVID-19 Temporary Employer-Employee Relief Scheme, but it seems not many are taking up the offer.
A study carried out by the University of Johannesburg Centre for Social Change and the Casual Workers’ Advice Office has revealed that most companies are not applying for the COVID-19 relief fund.
The Centre for Social Change's senior researcher Carin Runciman details the findings.
For organisations or companies that have had to shut down, out of the 40 that we surveyed, only nine had made an application to the UIF fund that has been established to assist workers in this time.Carin Runciman, Senior researcher - UJ's Centre for Social Change
This means that most workers are either being forced to take paid or unpaid leave, meaning the economic burden of the lockdown has been shifted on to them, which is also quite concerning.Carin Runciman, Senior researcher - UJ's Centre for Social Change
Runciman says there are a number of complex reasons behind this.
The first thing to consider is that a there are a large number of companies that are actually not compliant with paying UIF for their workers.Carin Runciman, Senior researcher - UJ's Centre for Social Change
There have also been complaints from some employers that they find it difficult - the kind of documentation they are being asked for is difficult particularly if you have a large number of employees.Carin Runciman, Senior researcher - UJ's Centre for Social Change
The survey did include large companies with over 1,000 workers and we are talking about nationally recognised companies as well as small to medium enterprises.Carin Runciman, Senior researcher - UJ's Centre for Social Change
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