Domestic workers don’t know their rights

2011-08-08 12:21

Johannesburg - Some domestic workers from disadvantaged backgrounds are not aware of their legal rights and are vulnerable to bad labour practices, the Federation of Unions of SA (Fedusa) said on Monday.

Better protection for the rights of domestic workers was needed, deputy general secretary Gretchen Humphries said in a statement.

"A domestic worker's job security is directly linked to that of his/her individual employers. If the employer is retrenched or suffers a downturn in business, the domestic worker may be the first luxury to be dispensed with," she said.

Many domestic workers employed in South African homes are African women from disadvantaged backgrounds.

"Workers in this sector are often unaware of their legal rights and due to the nature of informal employment, vulnerable to abuse and bad labour practices."

In South Africa, the minimum wage for a domestic worker working more than 27 hours a week in an urban area is R1 506 a month. In a non-urban area, it is R1 256 a month.

The federation said it was committed to facilitating skills training for domestic workers, and advocating for the implementation of a living wage rather than a minimum wage.


  • Darkwing Duck - 2011-08-08 13:46

    Nice one! As a direct result of your proposed legislation, you are closing further avenues where the poor have access to some kind of earnings. How many middle income householders want to accept the full liability of a employer/employee relationship complete with salary slip, uif, etc. All you are doing successfully is closing down a few more avenues where these people can find some kind of subsistance.

  • pages:
  • 1