Minimising loss of income and economic impact for employees and employers during COVID-19
Business for SA, welcomes the agreement finalised between government, business and labour at Nedlac on the Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS). The notices based on the agreement have been signed by Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi and await imminent gazetting
The TERS will be funded through accumulated reserves of the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) administered by the Department of Employment and Labour (DEL), and operates in terms of a revised directive issued by the Minister of Employment and Labour on 4 April. In addition, the benefits are subject to the terms of the memorandum of understanding or standard terms, which have also been published.
Benefits are available to all employees who are, along with their employers, contributors to the UIF where the employer has closed its operations, or part of its operations, as a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic, and where an employee has suffered, or will suffer, a loss of earnings.
The amount of the benefit will be based on a sliding scale amounting to 38% to 60% of earnings up to a set threshold. The benefit per employee is based on gross earnings and length of employment. A benefit calculator will be available on the DEL website. The benefits will be available for a period of up to three months. The maximum amount of the COVID-19 TERS monthly payment will be R6,730. The minimum benefit will be R3,500 a month.
In order to limit the complexity of administration, any business employing more than ten people will be entitled to apply for the TERS benefit on behalf of its workforce. Bargaining councils will also be entitled to apply on behalf of employees represented by the council. In companies with fewer than ten employees, the employees themselves will be able to apply.
The applying employer or employer group is required to pay the benefit to employees within 48 hours of receiving the monies from the UIF. The UIF will have the right to audit any applying company.
Employers may supplement these benefits, but the maximum that an employee may receive from the UIF and their employer combined is 100% of their salary. The employer must apply by reporting the total or partial closure to firstname.lastname@example.org. The employer will receive an automatic response outlining the application process and the documents and information that is required.
A detailed set of question and answers on the TERS scheme can be found on the Business for South Africa website at https://www.businessforsa.org/c-19-ters-benefit-what-you-need-to-know/
Employees and Employers can access the Department of Employment and Labour COVID-19 TERS Guide for more information.
Taxi Industry Covid – 19 Relief Fund Launched
The South African National Taxi Council (SANTACO), in recognition of the severe negative economic impact the Taxi industry will endure during COVID-19 lockdown, has established a managed Relief Fund called Taxi Industry Coronavirus Relief Fund (TICRF). The fund will be administered by a reputable firm of Auditors and Attorneys to ensure that funds received are managed and distributed in professional manner to all qualifying beneficiaries.
The socio-economic benefits of having the fund are as follows:
- The economic hardships faced by drivers, owners, queue marshals, rank managers and office staff and their respective families is lessened.
- The risk of steep increases of taxi fares is minimised as that could have an adverse impact on commuters who already spend a significant amount of their disposable income on transport.
- Social distancing measures are maintained ensuring that taxis minimise the risk of being vectors of the virus into townships and villages.
- The industry survives the lockdown and post lockdown economic hardships and is still able to provide the cheapest form of transport for the country.
For more information, please email Nkululeko Buthelezi (SANTACO) at email@example.com
Critical boost recieved for PPE
Initial orders for PPE and medical supplies valued at R450m have already been placed by Business for South Africa (B4SA) and the Solidarity Fund. Together with a similar order from National Treasury to the National Department of Health, it will help to alleviate the two week critical PPE period. As a country, we can all be proud of the incredible work that is being done by the Department of Health. As Business, we continue to pledge our collective support for Government’s efforts in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
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Contribute to the Solidarity Fund
The purpose and mandate of the Solidarity Fund, announced a week ago by President Cyril Ramaphosa, is to mobilise and coordinate efforts and resources from all South Africans and the international community to assist most vulnerable South Africans to deal with the impact of Covid19 and the consequences of measures intended to slow its rate of infection.
Details on how to donate are available on the Fund’s website www.solidarityfund.co.za