Labour & Industrial Relations Division
Consists of the following sections:
- Inspection and Enforcement Section.
- Conciliation & Mediation Section.
- Research, Legislation and Labour Standards Section.
- Information. Education and Communication Section.
- Workfare Programme Unit.
- Reduction of Workforce Unit.
- Special Migrant Worker's Unit.
INSPECTION AND ENFORCEMENT SECTION
- Responsible for the application of all labour legislation that regulates payment of remuneration and conditions of employment by carrying out regular inspections at places of work.
- Register complaints of rights and look for settlement.
- Process application for Workfare
- Implementation of the Workmen’s Compensation Ordinance in sectors where the National Pensions Act does not apply.
- Tender advice to workers and employers and their respective organizations to understand their rights and obligations and to improve the labour relationship existing between them.
- Initiate civil and criminal proceedings on behalf of workers against employers who infringe individual employment rights.
CONCILIATION & MEDIATION SECTION
The Conciliation and Mediation Section of the Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment provides a conciliation/mediation service for labour disputes not yet reported to the Commission for Conciliation and Mediation. Section 64 of the Employment Relations Act provides that no labour dispute shall be reported to the Commission for Conciliation and Mediation except after meaningful negotiations have taken place between the parties for a period not exceeding 90 days from the start of negotiations or such longer period agreed in writing between the parties. During the period of negotiations any party may, not later than 20 days before the expiry of the period of 90 days or such longer period as may be agreed between the parties, seek the assistance of the Conciliation and Mediation Section with a view to reaching an agreement. In case an agreement is reached, it has the effect of a collective agreement which binds the parties. Where no agreement is reached, the Conciliation and Mediation Section may advise the parties to jointly refer the dispute to the Employment Relations Tribunal or to an arbitrator appointed by them for voluntary arbitration.
RESEARCH, LEGISLATION AND LABOUR STANDARDS SECTION
- Responsible for the formulation of labour legislation.
- Maintaining a record of labour laws and enactment.
- Giving technical advice on labour legal matters.
- Responsible for International Labour matters.
- Processing of labour standards and resolutions adopted at International Labour Conference.
- Prepares annual reports on ratified and unratified Conventions.
- Tabling of labour instruments adopted at International Labour Conferences in the National Assembly.
INFORMATION, EDUCATION AND COMMUNICATION SECTION
- Engages in the preparation, organization and implementation of courses, seminars, workshops and talks for the benefit of workers in general, middle management and managers for sensitization to the world of work.
- Carries out a preventive work in creating a better understanding between workers and employers for promoting harmonious industrial relations and creating among workers the awareness of their rights and responsibilities.
- Contributes to foster a better understanding among the social partners.
- Training of staff.
WORKFARE PROGRAM UNIT
The Workfare Programme (WP) has become operational as from 02 February 2009 following the proclamation of the Employment Rights Act 2008 (ERgA 2008). The purpose of WP is to provide :
(i) immediate assistance to laid-off workers by offering them the choice of either being placed in a job through the Employment Service; or being trained and re-skilled for greater employability through the National Empowerment Foundation; or starting up a small business with the assistance of the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority
(ii) payment of a Transition Unemployment Benefit (TUB) for a period of 12 months varying from 90% of his basic wages for the first 3 months; 60% from the 4th to the 6th month and 30% from the 7th to the 12th month .It is to be noted that a contribution is being paid on behalf of the laid-off workers to the National Pensions Scheme during the period they benefit from TUB.
A Workfare Programme Fund (WPF) has been established under ERgA 2008 for the financial transaction of the WP. The WPF is managed by the National Savings Fund as per Section 45 of (ERA 2008). The WP is financed by the employers, the workers and the Government as follows:
(A) Employers’ Contribution
(i) The Training Levy has been increased from 1% to 1.5%, out of which 1% is credited to the Workfare Programme Fund;
(ii) Within 30 days of termination of contract, the employer should pay a recycling fee (as per Eighth Schedule of the Act) to the National Savings a/c of the worker.
(B) Workers’ Contribution
The workers contribute 1% of their basic wages monthly to an individual account in the National Savings Fund.
(C) Government’s contribution
All monies appropriated by the National Assembly for the purpose of the Workfare
REDUCTION OF WORKFORCE UNIT
The Unit starts functioning since 05 August13 under the section 39B of the Employment Rights Act 2008 as amended.
The Unit is responsible for ascertaining that bona fide cases of dismissal on ground of reduction of workforce or closure are referred to the Tribunal under subsection 39B(6) of the said Act for adjudication.
SPECIAL MIGRANT UNIT
>> Inspection at workplaces
>> Investigation into companies regarding conditions of work for migrant workers.
Brochures in English, Chinese and Hindi are being distributed to disseminate information on the Mauritian Legislations which equally apply to migrant workers and services provided by various Ministries and departments.
Two interpreters (one Chinese and one Indian) have been recruited to help facilitate communication between the Officers and the Chinese and Indian workers.