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From 1 March, 2021, the national minimum wage in South Africa will increase to R21.69. This will be across all sectors, although the domestic minimum wage is yet to keep up with the increase.

While the monetary increase of 23% might seem like a big jump, the minimum wage for domestics will increase to R19.09 per hour.

BusinessTech reports that this adjustment would amount to an increase of about R450 per month for a domestic worker, depending on the different payment models. This would again increase in 2022, should the minimum wage for domestic workers increase to 100%.

The National Minimum Wage was introduced only a few years ago to ensure people working in the lower income salary bracket earned salaries to cover the bare minimum of household expenses.

While there is another wage increase scheduled for 2022, the National Minimum Wage Commission has warned that the increase could lead to people not being able to afford their domestic workers’ salaries anymore and, ultimately, have to let them go.

Data published in November 2020 by Statistics South Africa shows that one of the job groups hit hardest by the lockdown are domestic workers, reports BusinesTech.

The stats show that during the second quarter of 2020 – when the hard lockdown was initiated – 259,000 domestics lost their jobs.

Image credit: Wiego

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