After two months of waiting for their Temporary Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) Covid-19 benefits, cleaners and porters employed by Tsebo Solutions and stationed at Netcare St Augustine’s Hospital, downed tools
Picture: Karen Sandison/African News Agency
After two months of waiting for their Temporary Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) Covid-19 benefits, cleaners and porters employed by Tsebo Solutions and stationed at Netcare St Augustine’s Hospital, downed tools Picture: Karen Sandison/African News Agency

Hospital workers down tools after non payment of Ters benefits

By Karen Singh Time of article published Jun 2, 2020

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Durban - After two months of waiting for their Temporary Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) Covid-19 benefits, cleaners and porters employed by Tsebo Solutions and stationed at Netcare St Augustine’s Hospital, downed tools.

Netcare regional director Craig Murphy said the protest action was unrelated to Netcare or the hospital and appeared to be a matter between employees and Tsebo.

“We can confirm the workers have resumed work,” said Murphy.

One of the staff who works for Tsebo Solutions said they were owed the Ters Covid-19 benefit for two months’ work.

“We’re supposed to be getting R4027 a month, but for two months the company never gave us the UIF,” he said.

Another employee said staff were told that the UIF money had been sent back.

“They claimed our money, then said they sent the money back, and when we phoned the Department of Labour they said there was no way the money could be paid again,” she said.

She added that the department said they were unable to pay the benefit because it had already been claimed.

“This month I’m getting only R2500. I worked for the whole month. What must I do with R2500? I have a baby and a family to look after,” she said.

Another concerned employee said that when the hospital was closed, the staff were sent home and then called back to clean the hospital.

“Some worked five days or 11 days, while others worked the whole month, and after that we didn’t even get a cent,” she said.

She said not receiving the UIF made it difficult for staff to survive.

The SA Transport and Allied Workers Union (Satawu) said claiming UIF but not paying employees was fraud.

Thulani Dlamini, Satawu’s provincial acting secretary, said workers had demanded that the company provide proof that the UIF money was returned to the department.

“A meeting has been scheduled for Thursday when the company will give feedback,” said Dlamini.

Royce van der Zwan, Tsebo Solutions Group spokesperson and director of marketing and sales, said in all matters related to the welfare and rights of employees, the company had sought to uphold the highest standards.

Van der Zwan said he was not aware of the specifics of the protest.

“We take their opinion very seriously. We will work together with them to make sure that, whatever the situation, it is rectified to comply with the labour regulations,” he said.

The Mercury

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