Millions of workers stand to benefit from proposed compensation bill – Cosatu

If signed into law, employees who are currently excluded – such as domestic workers – will be eligible to claim from the Compensation Fund for injuries, infections and fatalities that have occurred in the workplace.

Miners at work in a mine shaft. Picture: AFP

DURBAN – The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) said that the Compensation of Injury on Duty Amendment Bill would benefit millions of workers through the Compensation Fund if signed into law by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

Parliament’s labour and employment portfolio committee is currently holding public hearings on the proposed bill.

If signed into law, employees who are currently excluded – such as domestic workers – will be eligible to claim from the compensation fund for injuries, infections and fatalities that have occurred in the workplace.

The taxpayer funded Compensation Fund has over R60 billion worth of assets and more than R26 billion in reserves.
About 400,000 employers contribute R8.5 billion annually to the fund.

Cosatu’s Matthew Parks said that the implementation of the proposed Compensation of Injury on Duty Amendment Bill was long overdue.

“Whether you have got COVID-19 or suffer any other diseases in the workplace, that is now also covered under the Compensation Fund. That is a huge achievement because the many thousands of mineworkers whose lungs have been poisoned and the chemical workers who have been exposed to hazardous material will be covered.”

Parks has also called on the Compensation Fund to be modernised and for the turnaround time for claims to be shortened.

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