Johannesburg Bargaining Council Main Agreement
A dispute was referred to SALGBC, where the arbitrator found that the workers were bound by SALGBC`s main collective agreement. Employees were previously employed either by City Power (Pty) Ltd or by Johannes Water (Pty) Ltd, two local companies (MOEs). The plaintiff unions entered into collective agreements at the company level with City Power and Johannesburg Water, which governed the terms of employment of employees. In 2010, the First Town, the city of Johannesburg, made the decision to integrate some of its functions, which moved staff to the city`s work area. This transfer was made in accordance with LRA 197 and, for the next two years, the workers and the city acted in accordance with the old collective agreements. It was customary for there to be no agreement between the former and the new employer and the workers, as provided for in S 197 (6), to change the conditions of the workers after the transfer. Accordingly, the union argued that s 197 (5) (b) (ii) had been applied and that the city was therefore bound by the old collective agreements. When workers enter into a collective agreement that regulates the terms of employment with their employer and is then transferred to a new employer in accordance with Employment Relations Act 66 (LRA), in circumstances where the new employer falls within the scope and jurisdiction of a bargaining council that regulates the terms of employment in a main agreement; Are workers and the new employer bound by the old collective agreements or the main contract of the bargaining council? During the audit, the applicant unions argued, on behalf of the workers, that s 197 (5) (b) (ii) had made it clear that the new employer, the City of Casu, was bound by the old collective agreement. Section 197 (5) Points (a) and b) state: „5) (a) For the purposes of this subsection, the collective agreements and arbitration awards under paragraph (b) are arbitration agreements and awards that imposed on the former employer, immediately before the transfer date, for workers to transfer.
Under the LRA scheme, the old collective agreements only guarantee the continuity of the old terms of service to the extent that the new employer does not have a replacement principal contract. „At the time of their transfer, the general conditions of the workers were essentially guaranteed by collective agreements at the enterprise level with the CEECs. Section 197 would have protected it from unilateral differences on the part of the new employer. However, when the workers began working with the first resort opponent, they entered into a contractual system governed by a kind of collective agreement that, by using the LRA in a useful way, surpassed the collective agreement of the former employer. No further negotiations had to take place with them for these changes to take place, because once they became employed by the new employer, they were subject to the main agreement. Collective agreements, such as major agreements. B, enjoy the status of subordinate legislation and should apply beyond the collective agreements between the applicant parties and the CEECs.