Activists want government to do more to register domestic workers

Three years after the landmark Concourt ruling, very little has changed with their access to compensation By Kimberly Mutandiro It’s been three years since the Constitutional Court’s landmark ruling for domestic workers to be covered by the provisions of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act (COIDA). But activists say very little has changed for most workers. According to...

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Joburg City to blame for “dark buildings” crisis say property owners

Albert Street fire tragedy sparks renewed attempt to evict hundreds of people living in derelict downtown buildings By Kimberly Mutandiro Owners of a number of “dark buildings” in downtown Johannesburg have been trying to evict hundreds of people occupying their properties for more than a decade. In the aftermath of the fire at 80 Albert Street that killed 77 people, the...

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Covid grant should be increased to at least R413, say civil society groups

A new means test and bank verification process has resulted in far fewer people getting the grant By Liezl Human The R350 Covid-19 Social Relief of Distress grant should be increased to R413 in line with inflation, say the Institute for Economic Justice and the the Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa. The organisations noted with concern that the only aspect...

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Eviction orders not in line with Constitution, says legal organisation

The Socio-Economic Rights Institute says that Johannesburg’s Central Magistrate’s Court is often not applying the relevant laws By Masego Mafata The Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI) has analysed 47 of the 65 evictions granted by the Johannesburg Central Magistrate’s Court from 2013 to 2018. Most of the cases were over non-payment of a monthly rental. In the vast majority...

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Domestic workers need more time to lodge compensation claims, say unions

Workers have until November 2021 to submit retrospective claims of the last 27 years By Masego Mafata Since November last year, the Compensation Fund covers domestic workers. The inclusion was applied retrospectively, to 1994. Domestic workers were given a year to lodge these claims. There are currently no claims recorded with the Compensation Fund from domestic workers. Unions says the Labour...

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Constitutional Court protects domestic workers

The court has ruled that these employees can claim from the Compensation Fund if injured while on duty. The ground-breaking judgment also ensures domestic workers can apply retrospectively. By Musawenkosi Cabe “It’s unbelievable. We feel like flying, we are so happy. I nearly broke into song inside , breaking the law…” These were the words of 77-year-old Eunice Dhladhla,...

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Unions welcome compensation for domestic workers at last

Workers’ Compensation Act to get first overhaul in 23 years By Justin Brown Proposed changes to the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act to include domestic workers have been welcomed by unions. The Act was passed in 1993, before the Constitution, and has not been amended for years. The proposed amendments follow court rulings that the exclusion of domestic workers...

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Concourt rules apartheid intimidation legislation unconstitutional

1982 law criminalised free speech By Zoë Postman In a unanimous judgment, read by Justice Leona Theron on Tuesday, the Constitutional Court declared Section 1(1)(b) of the Intimidation Act of 1982 unconstitutional and invalid because it unjustifiably limited the right to freedom of expression. The section of the Act states that persons will be guilty of an offence if they act in a...

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