On Thursday, 26 March 2020, the Minister for Employment and Labour, Thembelani Nxesi, issued a Directive entitled ‘Covid- l9 Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme, 2020’ to the general public (the “Directive”). The underlying rationale for the issuing of the Directive is founded on the immense impact the President’s declaration of a national lockdown, and the Regulations imposed in terms of section 27(3) of the Disaster Management Act, have had on the continued trading and commercial viability of especially small to medium enterprises and those entities whose businesses operations are considered to be ‘non-essential’.
Survival in the time of Covid-19: A basic guide for employers on retrenchment and alternative resolution mechanisms
The essential conundrum facing employers can be simply stated as follows: how do I ensure the viability of my business post-pandemic and further, how do I maintain the integrity of my workforce?
The Occupational Safety and Health Act, No. 85 of 1993 (“the Act”) aims to ensure the wellbeing, health and safety of employees in the workplace. In light of the seriousness of the Covid-19 pandemic, it is important to consider the effects the spread of the virus may have on the South African employer and specifically the risk the virus poses to employees in the workplace. In this regard, section 8 of the Act is of importance as it sets out the duties that employers owe to their employees and is discussed below
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