There are times during the course of a year where work cannot continue due to various reasons. Within agriculture, rain days are fairly common, and it refers to any event that might occur which is deemed beyond the employer or employee’s control. For example, the planned harvest cannot take place due to heavy unforeseen rain the morning. Businesses should have a rainy-day policy in place to allow for any possible work-stoppage to be formalised. This will ensure employees are aware of when they should work, and for how long and even whether they should come to work at all. This policy will outline any form of ‘work-stoppage’ that may occur. The policy needs to clearly stipulate the regulations around when employees need to be notified (and how) on whether work will continue or stop. If reasonable warning has not been given, the employee will have to be paid.
Is the minimum four hours’ pay relevant to rainy days? Yes, if the employee is not informed within a reasonable timeframe, the employee is entitled to at least four hours wages (BCEA – Insertion of section 9A in Act 75 of 1997 3). The following section is hereby inserted in the principal Act after section 9: ‘‘Daily wage payment: 9A. (1) An employee or a worker as defined in section 1 of the National Minimum Wage Act, 2018, who works for less than four hours on any day must be paid for four hours work on that day.”