The Labour Relations Amendment Bill and the Basic Conditions of Employment Amendment Bill are concluded and the Parliamentary Hearings have been done.

The Employment Equity Amendment Bill and Employment Services Bill negotiations were concluded on the 4th of July 2012. The revised Bill and the Nedlac Report have been submitted for further comments and inputs. There is no consensus on amendments dealing with compliance and enforcement.

Business has rejected Government proposals to remove undertakings, objections and appeals to compliance orders. We have raised concerns regarding the competency of the labour inspectorate which has resulted in poor enforcement and indicated that there is no evidence that the proposed amendments will improve enforcement and increase compliance.

We have also rejected government’s proposal to link fines to a percentage turnover. Business proposed that a better approach would be to adjust the fines upwards by 200% (as per the trend in the BCEA and other revisions of fines), to address the CPI increases since last amended, and to provide for annual CPI increases. This proposal was rejected by both Labour and Government.

Furthermore, a distinction between employers with 150 employees and less is deleted and substituted with a clause requiring all designated employers to submit its first report within 12 months of becoming a designated employer.

Business has accepted this amendment on the understanding that the explanatory memorandum to the Bill will clearly set out the intent of the social partners to the extent that the social partners remain committed to ensuring that reporting requirements will have due regard to the administrative burden placed on small businesses and employers in general.

Get your compliance correct in terms of the anticipated new Bill which, as a percentage of turnover, now becomes a real business risk. Contact us on 043 – 7211030 or e-mail [email protected] for more info.