The Labour Department has appealed to employers of domestic workers and farm labourers to apply on their behalf so that they can get relief from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF).
Minister Thulas Nxesi said that the department had contact numbers for only 3% of the more than 90,000 workers and only a third of their emails.
A private company is helping trace these workers through their cellphones so that they are aware of the benefit and either get the employers to claim on their behalf or to reach out to the UIF themselves.
But Nxesi said that employers, especially in these two sectors, must heed the call.
The minister said that private company, Interfile, was running an SMS service at no cost to the UIF to trace domestic and farmworkers.
He said that according to the department’s records, a total of 91,406 domestic workers were on the database but only 2,968 or 3% had their cell numbers listed and only 25,518 or 28% had emails.
Nxesi said that employers who may have difficulties paying them must ensure that they access these services as soon as possible.
He said that the disbursements from UIF could also act as top-up for reduced salaries and these are necessary for mothers and sisters who really need the break.