"The farmer feeds his animals
at a higher cost
than the farmworker
is able to eat."
We believe that
The National Minimum Wage Law must be amended to give ALL workers the right to the full minimum wage.
Employer exemptions should be eliminated, as they create a legal loophole that will be used to exploit workers
R20/hr is not a living wage, and ultimately must be increased. The first step is to establish the equality of all workers.
Community Emergency Response Team (EPWP workers, Ekurhuleni)
Izwi Domestic Workers Alliance
General Industries Workers Union of South Africa (GIWUSA)
Lungile Mtshali Sanitation Workers (EPWP workers, Ekurhuleni)
Khanyisa Education & Development Trust
Oxfam South Africa
Pietermaritzburg Economic Justice & Dignity Group
Rural Legal Trust
South African Domestic & Allied Services Workers Union (SADSAWU)
Sundays River Valley Farmworkers Forum
Support Centre for Land Change
United Domestic Workers of South Africa (UDWOSA)
Women on Farms
THE HARD TRUTH
OF DOMESTIC AND FARMWORKERS EARN BELOW THE POVERTY LINE.
OF WOMEN FARMWORKERS WORK UNDER ILLEGAL CONDITIONS.
OF SOUTH AFRICAN HOUSEHOLDS OWN 70% OF HOUSEHOLD WEALTH.
Tired of exceedingly low wages and exploitative working conditions, South Africa’s
workers are demanding a living wage.
The 2018 National Minimum Wage Act aims to reduce wage inequality and protect the country’s most vulnerable workers. Yet those sectors excluded from the minimum wage are exactly those which comprise the largest sector of South Africa’s working poor.
The Pietermaritzburg Economic Justice and Dignity Group’s monthly Household Affordability Survey found that in June 2019, it cost R2422.78 to feed a household of four a basic nutritious diet. If a worker earns a total of R3500 in a month (full time wage at R20 an hour), then 70% of their monthly income would be spent solely on food. This leaves just over R1000 for essentials such as rent, school fees, healthcare, and transport.
Unless we provide a living wage for breadwinners, we will never break the cycle of generational poverty.
2. Devereux, S., et al. 'The farmer doesn’t recognise who makes him rich': Understanding the labour conditions of women farm workers in the Western Cape and the Northern Cape, South Africa. August 2019.