In line with Consolidated Employers Organisation’s January theme of discussing the legislative framework that governs labour relations in South Africa, we will focus on the establishment of the National Bargaining Council for the Private Security Sector (NBCPSS) in terms of section 27 of the Labour Relations Act (as amended). The private security sector was formerly regulated by a Sectoral Determination which the Minister of Labour and Employment issued.

The private security industry has seen rapid growth in the past two decades, but not without a few challenges.   Several unregistered and non-compliant businesses lead to fly-by-night companies that do not pay their workers the minimum wage, which has resulted in them undercutting the market and making it difficult for the registered companies to compete fairly.

This growth has necessitated the establishment of a bargaining council to focus on and cater specifically for the security industry. Thus, the NBCPSS will regulate issues relating to the terms and conditions of work for security officers, as well as a dispute resolution function. Historically the CCMA was inundated with work emanating from the security industry. The NBCPSS will now undertake this function, thereby eliminating the burden that the CCMA faced. The CCMA has also accredited the NBCPSS to perform dispute resolution functions, including Conciliations and Arbitrations.

Employers involved in this sector might wonder what the difference between PSiRA and the NBCPSS is? The objective of PSiRA is to regulate the private security industry and to exercise effective control over the practice of the occupation of a security service provider in the public and national interest and in the interest of the private security industry itself. PSiRA was established to set minimum standards expected of the private security service providers to ensure professional services are rendered within the sector and protect the interests of the users of security services.

NBCPSS has been established to negotiate, conclude, and enforce the collective agreement in terms of remuneration, benefits, and other conditions of employment.

Important to note that the NBCPSS mandate will not overlap with PSiRA as the NBCPSS is limited to labour-related matters only. In contrast, PSiRA regulates the service and operations provided by those falling under the Private Security sector.

With these two entities in place, the industry should be appropriately regulated and ensure fair competition and fewer fly-by-night operations within the private security industry.

As our theme month comes to an end, in summary, we looked at Labour Law as a whole and its legislative framework, which is an extensive topic, but we focused on termination of employment under the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, the aim of the National Minimum wage, how the bargaining councils fit into the Labour Relations Act and how to contract outside the legislative framework. Labour Law is continuously changing, and there are always new developments. That is why CEO is focused on keeping our members abreast of the developments. Please remember that our experienced CEO Team is ready to assist you with any labour-related matters. Kindly contact your nearest CEO Office for assistance.

Article by: Claire Turner
Provincial Manager – Durban