The 30th of November 2017 marked the end of a three year sectoral determination period for domestic workers and the ushering in of a new dispensation that will improve the wages and working conditions of domestic workers and vulnerable workers in particular.
According to the new sectoral determination published in the government gazette today domestic workers working more than 27 hours per week in bigger metropolitan areas (Area A) are to enjoy a minimum wage of R13, 05 per hour and effectively R 2544.55 per month for 45 ordinary hours of work per week.
Those domestic workers working more than 27 hours per week in the local metropolitan areas (Area B) will receive a minimum wage of R 11.89 per hour and effectively R2318.37 per month for 45 ordinary hours of work per week. Domestic workers working 27 ordinary hours per week or less in Area A are to enjoy a minimum wage of R15.28 and effectively R1787.62 for a maximum of 27 ordinary hours per week, and Area B will be entitled to a minimum wage of R14.03 per hour and effectively R1641.38 for a maximum of 27 ordinary hours per week. These provisions are effective as from 1 January 2018.
These figures will be offset by the introduction of the National Minimum Wages for domestic workers which will be set at 75% of the R20/h equaling R15/h. All wages for domestic workers during the period of the NMW will be set at R15 for both local (Area B) and greater metropolitan (Area A) areas. However the wages for domestic workers in local and rural areas who work 27 ordinary hours per week or less, will be slightly over the R15/h proposed by the NMW.
This is a significant step towards the reduction of wage differentials across the bigger and smaller metropolitan areas into the same minimum, therefore obviating the inequality experienced by rural and local council areas. The Minister of labour is also implementing these increases in order to offset the rising costs of living especially for domestic workers and maintain the current standards of living until such time when the NMW is promulgated.