On 17 August 2014, President Jacob Zuma assented to the Labour Relations Amendment Act, 2004 (Act No.6 of 2014) A commencement date for this Act, expected to be within the next few months, is still to be set.
According to Aadil Patel, Director and National Head of the Employment practice at Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr, this Act signals yet another move by government to streamline the country’s labour environment and to respond to, amongst others, to the increased informalisation of labour AND to ensure that vulnerable groups receive adequate protection.
“South Africa's labour legislation is amongst the most progressive in the world,” says Patel. “These raft of amendments to our labour environment are a mechanism to ensure that our labour legislation continues to remain relevant.”
Patel notes that the LRAA provides more protection to fixed-term employees, Temporary Employment Services (labour broker) employees and part-time employees.
“The amendments seek to achieve a balance that considers the commercial sustainability of businesses while protecting the interests of workers who earn less thanR 205 433.30 per annum,” he notes.
“These are but some of the amendments which will affect employers and employees alike,” Patel adds.