According to an article on IOL, 71 Sanral employees in the Electronic Toll Collection department might be retrenched. Employees who face an uncertainty regarding their jobs received a letter from Traffic Management Technologies, stating that the retrenchments are due to the legally forced delay in the commencement of the e-toll.
The article further revealed that staff members who are affected by the retrenchment might be transferred to other divisions within Sanral. Read the article here.
DESTINY chatted with Erika Bester, a practising attorney and Partner at Bester & Rhoodie Attorneys, about the correct procedure when retrenching staff.
If you feel you have been retrenched unfairly, what steps can you take in order to protect yourself?
You can refer a dispute of unfair dismissal to the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA). The matter would thereafter need to be referred to the Labour Court for adjudication, as the CCMA does not have jurisdiction to hear disputes concerning dismissal for operation requirements where more than one person has been retrenched.
What is the correct procedure when it comes to laying off staff?
An employer first needs to give its employees notice that it is contemplating retrenching based on operational requirements, in which notice the employer invites the employee/s to consult. The notice must disclose in writing all relevant information, including, but not limited to:
• The reason for the proposed dismissals.
• The alternatives that the employer considered before proposing the dismissals and the reasons for rejecting each for those alternatives.
• The number of employees likely to be affected and the job categories in which they are employed.
• The proposed method for selecting which employees to dismiss.
• The time when, or the period during which, the dismissals are likely to take effect.
• The severance pay proposed.
• Any assistance that the employer proposes to offer to the employees likely to be dismissed.
• The possibility of future re-employment of the employees who are dismissed.