Sections
Home   About Us | Contacts | Services | Media Desk | Tenders | Vacancies
Site Map
Personal tools
You are here: Home Media Desk Media Statements 2008 Minister urges farmers to expose non-complying colleagues
     Department of Labour Fraud line-08600 22 194   Southern African Development Community  BRICS Business Council
 
Document Actions

Minister urges farmers to expose non-complying colleagues

by lloyd last modified 2008-09-30 17:19

Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana has commended the “growing trend of exemplary employers” who don’t do just enough to comply with labour legislation but go the extra mile to ensure the welfare of their employees and their families.

Released by Department of Labour on 24 April 2008

Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana has commended the “growing trend of exemplary employers” who don’t do just enough to comply with labour legislation but go the extra mile to ensure the welfare of their employees and their families.

 

The Minister made the remarks while visiting a Northern Cape grape farm where he is conducting a two-day inspection of the province’s farms for acceptable working conditions of vulnerable workers.

 

Minister Mdladlana was particularly impressed by the conditions under which the 200 Southern Farms employees and their families work. The table grape exporting farm, situated on the banks of Orange River bordering Namibia 200 kilometres from Upington, is one of few farming industries where employees are treated with utmost care.

 

He urged good farmers and organisations like Agri-SA to expose those that are not complying with the law.

 

“Good farmers often unfairly suffer bad publicity on the international front because of those who do not respect the humanity of their workers.” he said.

 

At Southern Farms, each of the well-designed households is equipped with running water, electricity, pay TV channels and good sanitation. There is on top a first class crèche, clinic and runway that the Red Cross often uses to provide medical health care for the workforce. Workers have sports facilities, and have a community hall at their disposal that they use for their own community functions.

 

Workers are also trained on various skills, including agriculture, health and safety, basic mechanical knowledge and safe use of chemicals, while adults receive basic reading and writing.

 

“What the employer is doing here should be emulated by many.  It is a commendable example of a growing number of employers who realise the importance of everyone’s right to fair labour practices as enshrined in our country’s Constitution.

 

“There will come a time where we will follow those that are exporting while flouting the law – you cannot be a good exporter but also break the law.” he said.

 

Minister Mdladlana stressed that by conducting workplace inspections, labour officials are not driven by a need to punish, but by the desire to encourage and teach both the employer and their workers the importance of complying with occupational health and safety conditions for their own good.

 

Citing a recent case of a domestic employee who faces charges of negligence after a celebrity couple’s child drowned in a swimming pool while in her care, Minister Mdladlana emphasized the importance of an employment contract so vulnerable workers can be fully aware of their responsibilities.   In his next stop he visited another highly complying fruit exporter, in Upington.





 

Copyright ©2019 The South African Department of Labour:
Home | Disclaimer | PAIA | Privacy PolicyWebmaster