It’s been a full two weeks since our last update, and again it is a case of a lot of things happening very fast. As government has been preparing for the Risk Adjusted Approach to restarting the economy, various new changes have taken place which we will assess herein:
DMA Regulations – Alert Level 4
The biggest and therefore most important issue is the revised regulations which will now deal with the change from Lockdown to Alert Level 4.
To facilitate this, Government has issued new Regulations which completely replace the previous Regulations (Lockdown Regulations). As such, those regulations are now null and void, save for the parts dealing with offences under those regulations.
While we would urge you to familiarize yourself with the contents of the Regulations, some of the more important changes are that:
- Persons must wear cloth masks or a homemade item covering the nose and mouth when entering a public place.
- Businesses must determine their floorspace in square meters and limit the number of customers who may enter based on this.
- Businesses must provide sanitiser at their entrances for the use of Employees and the Public.
- Businesses must appoint a Compliance Officer to ensure compliance with COVID-19 Regulations.
- Business must make special provision for workers who are over the age of 60 or who have medical conditions which may increase their risk of death by COVID-19.
- Essential Services must obtain new CIPC certificates and issue new new permits based on FORM2 of the new regulations. (Download Here)
- Businesses must prepare a Plan to Reopen as per Annexure E of the new Regulations, this plan should include which Employees will be allowed to return to work, what plans have been implemented for a phased return, health protocols and details of the Compliance Officer.
- Small businesses need only have a basic plan, while medium and large businesses must have a written plan with detailed strategies.
- Mining may be resumed with limits imposed on opencast mining to start at 50% and phased up (Excluding Collieries that supply Eskom who may continue at 100%). Other mining may start up in batches but scale up to only 50% until further regulations are publsihed.
- The Mining industry MUST provide quarantine facilities for Employees who test positive for COVID-19.
- Mining Companies MUST make arrangements for the return of their South African Employees to work from their homes.
DMRE Directive and the AMCU Case
The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) have published an updated Directive relating to the requirements for mines to resume operations. (Download Here), however AMCU have taken the DMRE to court to force the Department to Impose stricter guidelines with more details (Red the Judgement Here). This means that the DMRE will be issuing an updated Directive shortly to comply with the judgement.
The Once-Off Movement Between Provinces
People who were not at their homes or areas of work prior to the Lockdown will be permitted to move to those areas across provincial and municipal borders on a once-off basis between the 1st and the 7th of May 2020 without the need for a permit.
This is done in order to assist Employers with having their Employees return to work in the coming weeks.
DEL Directives for the Safe Resumption of Employment
The Department of Employment and Labour has previously issued Guidelines for the COVID-19 Pandemic in March 2020, however have now issued a Directive in terms of the DMA Regulations dealing with specific issues when Employees return to work. It is important that Employers familiarize themselves with the contents thereof and ensure that measures are put in place to comply therewith prior to re-opening.
UIF TERS Benefits – Update
Several Employers who have applied for the UIF TERS benefit on behalf of their Employees have received payment, with the average lead time being around one (1) week for our members who have applied.
For the most part the process has worked with only individual and minor cases where the funds received did not correspond reasonably with the funds requested.
Employers who remain on reduced work and/or lay-off after April 2020 are reminded to again apply for the UIF TERS benefits on behalf of their Employees for the May 2020 period.
We remain available to all of our clients and can be directly contacted at any time for assistance and guidance.
Eben van Deventer 082 412 2845 firstname.lastname@example.org
AJ van Niekerk 079 890 4411 email@example.com
Elri de Bruin 082 753 5695 firstname.lastname@example.org
Conrad Luus 072 624 3410 email@example.com
We will continue to post updates on developments as they become known to us during this time.
To stay up to date, please subscribe to our COVID-19 Updates.