The Amended Consolidated Direction on Occupational Health and Safety Measures in Certain Workplaces (“Direction“) was published by the Minister of Employment and Labour on 11 June 2021. Employers are obliged to notify employees about the contents of the Direction and the manner they intend on implementing it. Employers should take note of the Direction if they intend on implementing a policy prescribing mandatory vaccines for employees.

The Direction contains provisions for the mandatory vaccination of employees in the workplace – a highly pertinent issue during the age of COVID-19. The Direction also concerns specific provisions relating to risk assessment, administrative measures, and symptom screening. These provisions are discussed in further detail below.

Direction 3 is titled ‘Risk assessment and plans for protective measures’ and makes provision for the implementation of mandatory vaccines. Employers who desired to implement mandatory vaccination policies had to indicate within 21 days of effective date of the Direction (11 June 2021) to indicate whether, based on the operational requirements of the workplace, they would do so. This 21-day window closed on 2 July 2021. The Direction makes no provision for employers who missed the 21-day window period to indicate their desire to implement mandatory vaccination policies. Employers who did not make such indications seemingly cannot implement . Nonetheless, Direction 3(1)(a) still obliges employers to undertake risk assessments, which consider the workplace’s specific circumstances, to affect its minimum measures.

In response to the nationwide rollout of COVID-19 vaccines, administrative measures under the Direction at 4(1)(i)(ii) now oblige employers to provide employees with information raising awareness of the nature of the vaccines used in the country, their benefits, and risks of side effects. Employees can achieve this by making vaccination awareness materials available conspicuously.

Further updates to administrative measures include sub-direction 4(1)(k), which obliges employers to give administrative support to assist employees in registering on the Electronic Vaccine Data System Registration Portal. Another update appears under sub-direction 4(1)(l), which provides that employers must provide employees with paid time off to be vaccinated. Employees must, in turn, provide proof of the vaccination.

Direction 6, is titled ‘Symptom Screening’. Under sub-direction 6(3)(b)(iii), where an employee presents at work with COVID-19 related symptoms, employers must immediately place the employee on paid sick leave in terms of the BCEA. Or, where the employee’s sick leave entitlement under the BCEA is exhausted, the employer must apply for an illness benefit under the Unemployment Insurance Act 63 of 2001. This would entail placing the employee on unpaid leave and then claiming back the statutory benefit, which would be payable to the employee. The position where sick leave has been exhausted has changed from the previous direction. The old direction, which is no longer in effect, allowed for a claim under the COVID-19 Temporary Employer / Employee Relief Scheme (“TERS”) where sick leave had been exhausted.

Additionally, under sub-direction 6(9), employees who suffer side effects resulting from the vaccination and cannot attend work have the entitlement to be placed on paid sick leave in terms of the BCEA.  Employers may accept a COVID-19 vaccination certificate in place of a medical certificate.

With Directions under constant revision, employers should be aware of the changes and look to their governing bodies for guidance if in doubt.

A discussion on mandatory vaccine policies in the workplace can be found here.

A copy of the direction can be obtained here:  Labour Relations Act: Consolidated direction on occupational health and safety measures in certain workplaces (

The Vaccination Programme registration portal can be accessed here: COVID-19 Vaccine Registration (

Should you anticipate the need to implement a policy prescribing mandatory vaccines for employees, you should consult a legal advisor to ensure you will not fall foul of any labour laws.




About the author

Kyle joined Dunsters from Rhodes University in 2021 (B.COM Economics, LLB). He has a multicultural background, growing up between Bahrain, England and South Africa.

Kyle is a strong-minded individual who is passionate about litigation and effectively guiding clients through the legal process.

On weekends you can find Kyle hiking in the mountains or tearing it up on a sports field – his forte being competitive rugby and cricket.

We use cookies to analyse website usage and other technical information to improve the functionality of our website   View more
Cookies settings
Privacy & Cookie policy
Privacy & Cookies policy
Cookie name Active
This policy informs you how we will use your personal information, by using our services and/or website you consent to our use of your personal information for the purposes described herein.
    • Personal Information means information relating to an identifiable, living, natural person, and where it is applicable, an identifiable, existing juristic person, including, but not limited to, name and surname; identification number; physical address; contact information such as an email address and telephone number.
    • Data Subject means the person to whom personal information relates.
    • Responsible Party means a public or private body or any other person which, alone or in conjunction with others, determines the purpose of and means for processing personal information.
    • Identification Information means information that can be used to identify the data subject.
    • Compliance Information means information that is needed by Dunsters Attorneys for us to be compliant with relevant laws including the Financial Intelligence Centre Act “FICA” and regulatory standards and government orders such as Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Know-Your-Client (KYC) and Counter-Terrorist Financing (CTF).
    • Communication Information includes all correspondence such as emails and messages.
    • Financial information means any information relating to payment of invoices, including but not limited to banking information and account details
  • We may collect website usage and other technical information such as details of your visits to our website through cookies and other tracking technologies. Cookies are small data files stored by your computer to help improve functionality or tailor information to provide visitors with more relevant pages.
  • The information we collect may include information provided to us through your initial correspondence, possibly including:
    • Name and Surname
    • Email address
    • Contact numbers; and/or
  • This may also include information that we may have requested, and you subsequently provided, including, but not limited to:
    • Compliance Information
    • Identification Information
    • Communication Information
    • Financial Information
    • Other Personal Information
  • Reasons for collection of your personal information will be explained to you when we collect/request the information. We may request certain personal information to comply with global industry regulatory standards, local regulatory standards or government orders.
  • You, the data subject, consent to our use of your information in line with this privacy policy and/or any terms of engagement you may sign with us. If you wish to revoke your consent, please email .
  • We acquire information from you directly, save where accessible from publicly available sources.
  • Information may be collected through various platforms, including:
    • Our onboarding process with you
    • Email engagement
    • Telephonic engagement
    • In-person engagement
    • Cookies
    • Your personal information may be collected and saved on our system for the following purposes:
      • To enable us to provide legal services.
      • To send news, updates and marketing information.
      • To review job applications.
      • To comply with legal requirements
    • Your personal information will not be used for the following purposes:
      • We will never use your personal information for direct marketing purposes without your consent (you may opt-out of our newsletter at any time)
      • We will never disclose your personal information to another third party without permission from yourself, unless it is required for fulfilment of our legal services or as mandated by law.
  • Right of the data subject under the POPI Act include, but are not limited to:
    • Having access to their recorded personal information
    • Requesting correction or amendment to their personal information and to have information corrected or amended
    • Requesting deletion or destruction of personal information from the responsible party’s system
    • Objecting to the processing of personal information
    • Submitting a complaint to the Regulator regarding the alleged interference with the protection of the personal information of any data subject or submitting a complaint to the Regulator (
    • Instituting civil proceedings regarding the alleged interference with the protection of their personal information.
  • We will retain your information for the period required by law.
  • Where we retain your contact information for any period other than may be prescribed by law, we retain this information to keep you updated of our various offerings and news. By not unsubscribing from newsletter, you consent to us retaining your personal information on our records indefinitely, for the purposes explained above, including, to keep you informed about news and updates pertaining to Dunsters Attorneys Inc.
  • We take reasonable technical and organisational measures to secure the integrity of your personal information and use accepted technological standards to prevent unauthorised access to or disclosure of your personal information, and protect your personal information from misuse, loss, alteration and destruction.
  • The measures that are taken in order to protect your personal information include:
    • Physical measures: access to physical copies of your information is controlled using strict protocol.
    • Electronic measures: firewalls and password protection
  • While we will take all reasonable steps to ensure the security of your data and personal information according to industry standards, it is not possible to guarantee the complete security of all information provided at all times.
  • We will notify you as soon as reasonably practicable of any breach of security, loss of or damage to your personal information.
  • Data subjects are responsible for taking reasonable precautions to safeguard their personal information.
  • Although we endeavour to ensure your information is as correct as possible, you are responsible for notifying us of any changes to your data or personal information in respect of the services provided and/or your account with us.
  • We will not be held liable for losses of any nature which are due to incorrect data or personal information provided by users in respect of the service provided.
  • We will not be held liable for any loss or damage arising from a security breach or disclosure of your personal information or data, to the maximum extent permitted by law.
  • We shall not be liable for any damage or interruptions caused by any computer viruses or other malicious code that may affect your computer or other equipment, or any phishing, spoofing or other attack.
  • If you suspect that your personal information has been compromised, or that there has been unauthorised use of your email address by any person, or any other violations to the security of the website, please contact us.
Save settings
Cookies settings