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Saftu expresses misgivings with minimum wage

todayMarch 1, 2024 31

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Labour federation, Saftu, has reiterated its stance on the National Minimum Wage (NMW), saying while it sets a standard for employers – it not a living pay.
Last month, the federation expressed its dissatisfaction with the NMW when the Department of Employment and Labour announced that it will increase to R27.58 per hour from this month, up from R25.42 in 2023.
It called for it to be set at a level that affords workers and their families a decent life.

Saftu’s Trevor Shaku says the current minimum wage does not take into consideration all types of workers, especially those in vulnerable sectors such as farm workers and the domestic workers, and the impact that basic necessities such as rent, transport and medical aid, also have on their already strained salaries.

Saftu says although this current increase is above-inflation, it remains an increment to a meager wage, making it unlikely to bring about a significant difference.

South Africa’s largest labour union federation, Cosatu, which has long supported government’s initiative, has raised concern over employers who ignore the Basic Conditions of the Employment Act.

The federation is calling on the labour department to impose a fine on such companies.

Cosatu’s Matthew Parks says unions need to educate their members on such matters so that they can report companies who don’t adhere to the provisions of the Employment Act.

Written by: Nokwazi Qumbisa

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