9 April 2020
The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) is totally saddened and disappointed that several employers in the private sector are failing to assist workers during the COVID-19 lockdown to access the UIF/Temporary Employment Relief Schemes payments. FEDUSA’s call comes after widespread complaints from members on the ground that some employers were refusing to assist workers who were struggling to access UIF/TERS payments as they were not familiar with the rules. These latest reports received from workers have been met with absolute dismay and smacks of arrogance and insensitivity towards the national protocols and gazetted proclamations articulated by President Ramaphosa and the Command Teams of Cabinet Ministers who have been passionately driving the disaster management relief process through the special dispensations announced, said Riefdah Ajam, FEDUSA General Secretary.
The union federation wants Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi not only to urgently gazette rules that will compel employers to apply for TERS benefits in the wake of widespread non-compliance, but also to publicly name and shame such companies; and in the ultimate instance, prosecute all those who insist on not complying. However, FEDUSA wishes to applaud those employers who have embraced the extraordinary nature of this pandemic, by fostering newfound trust relations. Equally so, due acknowledgement must be given in this instance.
FEDUSA will not allow its members to be subjected to such demoralising and insensitive practices, that will only add insult to an already traumatic experience due to the COVID 19 lockdown. The Federation therefore calls on Minister Nxesi to act with vigilance and move with haste to uphold the spirit and intent of the various special dispensations that have been gazetted to safeguard and minimise the impact of this pandemic on South African society overall.
For interviews please contact:
Ms Riefdah Ajam
FEDUSA General Secretary
079 696 2625
FEDUSA Media and Research Officer
072 637 8096