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Diversity within the workforce

On 1 February 2024, the Minister of Employment and Labour published the new Draft Regulations on Proposed Sectoral Numerical Targets for the Employment Equity Act in the Government Gazette for public comment.


Employment Equity Amendment Act 4 of 2022

The Employment Equity Amendment Act 4 of 2022 was signed into law in April 2023 by President Ramaphosa. This legislation empowered the Minister of Labour to set sector-specific targets for designated groups across all levels for any national economic sector.

 

Consequently, the Department of Employment and Labour has revised its targets, with the aim of increasing diversity and representation, across the full range of management positions, from junior to top management, professionally qualified people and skilled technical employees.

 

The revised targets prioritise achieving diverse leadership teams. For example:

  • In manufacturing, 40% of top management should be from designated groups with at least 15% being female

  • In administration and support activities 50% of top management should be from designated groups (30% male and 20% female) while 85% of professionally qualified and middle management should be from designated groups

  • In the agricultural sector the skilled technical employees should be 78% from designated groups (50, 4% male and 27,6% female)

 

The new system replaces individual quotas for African, Coloured, and Indian employees with a broader “designated groups” category.

 

Provincial and national targets are merged, creating a single national target for each sector.

 

The department aims to accelerate progress towards fairer representation in workplaces, acknowledging the slow pace of previous efforts.

 

Of significance is that the prescribed targets are five-year targets, and designated employers will maintain the power and responsibility to determine their own annual goals towards achieving the relevant five-year targets. It is important to note that these are draft targets and the final version might be adjusted based on public feedback. The draft targets for the various sectors are open for comment until 2 May 2024.

 

All public comments must be in writing and forwarded to:

1. Christina Lehlokoa

 

2. Julian Mohale

 

3. Innocent Makwarela

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