Presentation - Mr Halton Cheadle

Report
The Vision for the
Post-1994 Labour Market
C C M A 1 5 TH
HALTON CHEADLE
ANNIVERSARY – THINK TANK
10 NOVEMBER 2011
PRESENTATION OUTLINE
 The challenges at the time
 Policy and legislative responses
 Vision for the post-1994 labour market
CHALLENGES
 The new government faced a terrible legacy of extreme inequality and
high unemployment

mass unemployment and poverty

discrimination and inequality

intense conflict at the workplace

low levels of productivity

shortage of managerial and technical skills required to drive an
economy

Sluggish employment growth

economy increasingly open to international competition
POLICY & LEGISLATIVE RESPONSES
 Constitutional rights
 RDP’s employment related objectives
 Policies underlying the LRA
 NEDLAC Act
 Labour Market Commission (Presidential Commission to investigate
labour market policy (Report in June 1996)
 EEA, BCEA, SDA
THE RDP’s VISION
 Eradication of poverty through “more and better” jobs
 Worker participation
 The elimination of racial and gender-based discrimination in the labour
market
 Productivity enhancement
 A stable macroeconomic environment
LABOUR MARKET COMMISSION
 Terms of reference

To develop labour market policies to meet the RDP
 Voice regulation at all levels
 Balance between labour market security and flexibility
 National Productivity Accord
 Productivity-enhancing work organisation
 Institutionalised co-ordination
THE EMERGENCE OF A POST-1994 VISION
 “Regulated flexibility”
 A growth path with job creation and strong economic development
 Increased private sector investment to underpin employment growth
including the IDC’s development finance and support measures for
small, medium and micro-enterprises
 Labour market policies co-ordinated with macroeconomic policies by
means of a national Accord for Employment and Growth involving all
of the social partners
 Macroeconomic, industrial and trade policies that promote
employment and do not focus only on driving down inflation
THE POST-1994 VISION
 Management of global competition - increasing efficiency in the
utilisation of domestic resources, both labour and capital, as the basis
for effective engagement in international markets
 Reforms in the labour market to promote flexibility, where flexibility is
understood as a multi-faceted concept that is not merely a euphemism
for lower real wages or weak unions
 Protection of individual rights and labour market security
 The balance between flexibility and security achieved through the
mechanism of voice regulation - bargained arrangements between
strong, stable and well-informed employer and employee
representatives
THE POST-1994 VISION
 Promotion of collective bargaining
 Institutional framework

Nedlac

Sectoral bargaining through bargaining councils

Workplace forums
THE POST-1994 VISION
 Employment equity – affirmative action without quotas but the
emphasis on the role of collective bargaining and participatory
workplace structures in developing employment equity plans
 Skills development with recognition of prior learning
 Workplace-based training with transportable skills and qualifications
THE VISION FOR NEDLAC
 Policy-making at the highest level
 Consensus based
 Tripartism
 A forum for negotiating legislation prior to normal legislative processes
 Demarcation of sectors
THE LRA’S VISION
 Social justice and economic development
 Freedom of association
 Organisational rights to stabilise union organisation
 Promotion of collective bargaining – both at workplace and sectoral
level

Establishment and consolidation of bargaining councils

Framework agreements at sectoral level

Productivity bargaining at plant level
 Less adversarialism and meaningful consultation at all levels
THE LRA’S VISION
 Speedy dispute resolution with the emphasis on meaningful consensus-
seeking approaches
 Recognition of the right to strike with relatively non-technical processes
to follow
 Interest arbitration of essential services disputes
 Relative labour peace – no strikes over dismissals and thorough
mediation before strike action
 Codified, clear law on unfair dismissals with final and binding
arbitration; limited grounds for review
 Limited concept of the unfair labour practice
 Simple workplace disciplinary processes
QUESTIONS
 Why have we not achieved more consensual, rather than less
adversarial engagements?
 Has NEDLAC succeeded as an effective tripartite institution?
 Is collective bargaining playing a constructive economic role
 Is there sufficient progress on productivity and skills development?
 Is it too easy to strike?
 Is it too easy to refer disputes?
QUESTIONS
 Why have unions not followed organisational and strategic approaches
to changes in the labour market?
 What is the scope for job creation agreements, perhaps with lower
wages for new entrants?
 What role can the CCMA play to achieve the original vision?

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