Given that retrenchments have already tripled, compared to last year, it's a huge blow.
Mail & Guardian has reported the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) will have less money to deal with more labour disputes after the Finance Minister’s supplementary budget meant the CCMA would have R55.4 million less to work within the coming year.
The Mail & Guardian article also states there will be three times more people facing retrenchment is this year compared the last, with more than 100,000 at risk of losing their jobs under the Covid-19 lockdown. And, with Unemployment Insurance Fund’s (UIF’s) Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) ending in June, the situation was more likely to worsen than improve.
Reads the article: “According to the data, 1,676 small-scale retrenchment cases, and a further 362 large-scale retrenchment cases were referred to the statutory body between April 1 and the end of June….The CCMA’s ability to fulfil its mandate has already been compromised by Covid-19 and the lockdown, which forced the commission to close its doors for just over a month."
The article also states that, in the 2018-2019 financial year, the CCMA's intervention prevented 41 percent of workers who had been given section 189a (large-scale) retrenchment notices from losing their job and quotes CCMA director Cameron Morajane who said the CCMA’s core business of “expeditious dispute resolution” would be affected by the budget cut. That said, he explains that the CCMA is busy reviewing their operational model to improve efficiency.