Basic condition of employment refers to a minimum term or condition of employment. Work is continuous unless it is interrupted by an interval of at least 60 minutes.  An agreement in writing may reduce the meal interval to not less than 30 minutes; and dispense with a meal interval for an employee who works fewer than six hours on a day.

Annual leave

For each 12 consecutive months of employment, an employee is entitled to at least 21 consecutive days of annual leave on full remuneration. By agreement between the employee and the employer, employee may be entitled instead to one day of annual pad leave for every 17 days on which the employee worked or was entitled to be paid, or, again by agreement, one hour on full pay for every 17 hours worked or entitled to be paid.

Sick leave

An employee is entitled to 6 weeks’ paid sick leave during the sick leave cycle of 36 months subject to the production of medical certificates under certain circumstances.

Maternity leave

An employee is entitled to receive at least four consecutive months’ maternity leave and may be unpaid. The Unemployment Insurance Act prescribes the maternity benefits which the employee may receive from the State. It may commence four weeks before the expected date of birth or on the date from which a medical practitioner or a midwife certifies that it is necessary for employee’s health or that of her unborn child that she should be on maternity leave. No employee may work for six weeks after the birth of her child unless a medical practitioner or a midwife certifies that she is fit to do so.

An employee who has a miscarriage during the third trimester of pregnancy or bears a stillborn child is entitled to maternity leave for six weeks after the miscarriage or stillbirth, whether or not the employee had commenced maternity leave at the time of the miscarriage or stillbirth.  An employee must notify an employer in writing, unless the employee is unable to do so, of the date on which the employee intends to-        

(a)     commence maternity leave; and 

(b)     return to work after maternity leave. 

The notification must be given at least four weeks before the employee intends to commence maternity leave; or if it is not reasonably practicable to do so, as soon as is reasonably practicable. The payment of maternity benefits will be determined by the Minister subject to the provisions of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1966 (Act 30 of 1966).

Family responsibility leave

All employees who have been in employment with the employer for longer than four months and who work for at least four days a week for the employer quality for three days’ paid family responsibility leave in each 12 month period of employment. The leave may be taken when the employee’s child is born, child is sick or death of a spouse.

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