The Department of Employment and Labour has extended the Covid-19 Temporary Employee / Employer Relief Scheme (TERS) to 15 September 2020.
The TERS applies to employers who are facing distress and are unable to pay salaries due to the lockdown. The payments are part of a government-wide response to ease the burden of the pandemic and to ensure that, to the extent possible, workers are not prejudiced by the lockdown.
The applications are sent in by employers and then distributed either directly to the accounts of workers or through their employers.
The announcement follows negotiations at the National Economic and Labour Council (NEDLAC), and the signing of a new direction by minister Thulas Nxesi.
“With the lockdown for some industries extended to September 15, it only makes sense for us to continue to shield workers from the worst effects of the pandemic by extending the relief payments which have placed much needed cash into the hands of ordinary workers in this country,” said Nxesi.
Following the extension, Nxesi said the UIF will continue to receive applications for the March 2020 to end July 2020 period until 15 September 2020 and no further applications shall be accepted beyond that date.
The receipt of Covid-19 TERS benefit applications for August 2020 to 15 September 2020 shall close on 30 October 2020, and no further applications shall be accepted beyond that date, the minister said.
“To date, the UIF has disbursed over R41 billion in 9 501 365 payments through applications by 825,814 employers.” A directive published on Monday confirmed the extension including the new dates.