Extending coverage of the unemployment insurance-system in South Africa

Dupper, Ockert ; Olivier, Marius ; Govindjee, Avinash (2010)


The Unemployment Insurance Act 63 of 2001 ("UIA") and Unemployment Insurance Contributions Act 4 of 2002 ("UICA") are applicable to all employers and employees except for those specifically excluded. Unless specifically excluded, participation in the unemployment insurance scheme is compulsory. The UIA scope of coverage is narrow as it continues to exclude the atypically employed (particularly independent contractors, so-called dependent contractors and those who are self-employed or informally employed), public servants in the national and provincial spheres of government, learners, and certain categories of migrant workers from its purview. Given the vulnerable position of these groups, it is arguable that South Africa should, as a matter of principle, broaden the scope of coverage to include them. Furthermore, these exclusions may be susceptible to constitutional challenge in the context of the right to access to social security

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