Employment Equity Act Amendments

The upcoming Employment Equity Amendment Bill will have a profound impact on employers throughout South Africa.

Possibly the biggest impact is that the Minister of Employment and Labour will now be able to determine sectoral numerical targets for ‘designated employers’: 

  • These ‘numerical targets’ may differentiate between occupational levels, sub-sectors, regions or other relevant factors.
  • Previously, employers, in consultation with their EE Forum, had the opportunity to set their own targets in line with the Economically Active Population (EAP) nationally, or for their region.
  • With the amendment, employers will now need to align their targets with the prescribed ‘numerical targets’ from the Minister, and failure to meet these targets will result in non-compliance with the Act. The existing justification grounds for non-compliance remain available to employers, although you will have to justify in-depth as to why it has not been met.
  • Failure in reaching these ‘numerical targets’, will lead to being fined as well as to being excluded from doing business with the Government as you are now non-compliant with the Act, making these ‘numerical targets’ nothing less than quotas for employment that an employer must meet.
  • Proposals for these sectoral targets must first be published for public comment after consultation with the relevant stakeholders and the Employment Equity Commission. 

Further important amendments include ‘clarification’ to whom an employer must consult on matters pertaining to Section 17 (Analysis; Preparation, Implementation & Monitoring of the Plan; and the Report): 

  • where there is a representative trade union, employers must only meet with that union, thus excluding employee representatives; and
  • where there is no representative trade union, the employer will then consult with its employees – across all occupational levels, designated groups, and non-designated groups. 

It is expected that the Amendment Bill will be signed into force by the President in September 2022, and we will keep members updated on further developments.

Although this is a cumbersome and business-restricting duty placed upon employers, those who fall foul of the Act may face severe penalties. NEASA Labour Compliance understands this frustration and wants to assist in making this process as painless as possible.

Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call on 012 332 5350.