Section 9 of Sectoral Determination 13 is very clear in its requirement that employees should receive written particulars of employment (contract) when they start work. This means that the contract of employment must be provided when the employee commences with their duties and cannot be given several days or weeks after the employee has already started work.

It is furthermore important the contract of employment contains all the legally required information, as stipulated by law.

The contract must include the following:

  1. The full name and address of the employer;
  2. the name and occupation of the agri-worker, and a brief description of the work for which the agri-worker is employed;
  3. the place of work, and where the agri-worker is required or permitted to work at various places, an indication of this;
  4. the date on which employment began;
  5. the agri-worker’s ordinary hours of work and days of work;
  6. the agri-worker’s wage or the rate and method of payment;
  7. the rate of pay for overtime work;
  8. any other cash payments that the agri-worker is entitled to;
  9. any other payment in kind received by the agri-worker;
  10. how frequently wages will be paid;
  11. any deductions to be made from the agri-worker’s wages;
  12. the leave to which the agri-worker is entitled to; and
  13. the period of notice required to terminate employment, or if employment is for a specific period, the date when employment is to terminate.

If an agri-worker is not able to understand their contract, the employer must ensure that it is explained to the agri-worker in a language and in a manner that the agri-worker understands. In any event where an employer considers making a change in the terms and conditions of employment, they must remember that the contract cannot be changed unilaterally, and that consultation with the employee must take place. The employee must agree to the changes (sign the amendments/new contract) before it is implemented. An employer must retain a copy of the contract while the agri-worker is employed and for three years thereafter.

For more information, feel free to visit the SIZA Social Standard, code requirement 8.1.2.