Labour Department to launch hotline

A hotline will be set up to monitor the performance of public servants, Parliament heard on Tuesday.

Department of Labour Director General Jimmy Manyi told the portfolio committee on labour that a DG’s hotline would be set up in November 2009 to monitor the performance of public servants.

“If a labour centre is constantly receiving negative reports from people who call the hotline, steps will be taken against the implicated office,” he said.

“In the event that the office is not performing, such information will be evaluated and used during performance evaluations.”

Manyi said a number of blitz inspections would be carried out on companies to ensure compliance with labour laws.

In cases where non-compliance was discovered, “punitive measures” would be taken against such employers.

The issues of compliance with labour laws refer to sectoral determination issues, employment equity issues, occupational heath and safety issues and the basic conditions of employment issues, according to a statement from the department.

Manyi said proposals were afoot to ensure that companies complied with employment equity by increasing the penalties that would be imposed on companies.

A penalty levy of 10% of a company’s turnover would serve as a disincentive against non-compliance, he said.

For example, a company with a turnover of R1-billion would be fined R100-million for non-compliance with employment equity laws.

The deputy director general responsible for service delivery, Siyanda Zondeki, said the lack of sufficient inspectors was a contributing factor in the current low levels of compliance with labour laws.

She said that the available inspectors were unable to reach all sectors within the preferred time frames.

“Part of improving this compliance rate involves upgrading the salary levels of inspectors, speedy filling of inspector vacancies and ongoing training and development of inspectors,” Zondeki said.—Sapa

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