Minister of Employment and Labour Thulas Nxesi said today, that more than 14 000 domestic workers have benefited to the tune of more than R55.5 million in COVID-19 Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) benefits as from Saturday.
Nxesi said the domestic workers were being paid directly and that current data showed that 14 113 domestic workers had benefitted from the special lockdown benefit to the tune of R55 572 870.00.
“Certainly, we are beginning to ensure that the spirit and letter of our intervention is reaching the most vulnerable of our society. While we are happy that the efforts are beginning to bear fruit, we are worried that this still represents a drop in the ocean in terms of domestic workers on our systems whose number is almost a million,” Nxesi said.
“We need more employers of domestic workers to apply on their behalf so that they benefit from the relief scheme that government availed to ensure that we mitigate the worst effects of the lockdown.”
The department has partnered with private firm, Interfile to help it trace domestic workers through cellphone numbers and other forms of communication to ensure that they receive their necessary benefit.
Nxesi said this partnership coupled with the intentional work by the department was yielding results.
“Currently the department is also going through its database to reach out to farm workers who are also in our category of the most vulnerable groups. I have instructed the department to do everything possible to track and trace workers in these groups to ensure that to the extent possible, no worker is left behind or falls through the crack of the social net we are providing.”