What should South Africans who employ domestic workers be doing to ensure that their working agreement is within the law and brings much needed dignity to the domestic work industry and the women in it?

Aisha Pandor, CEO and founder of Sweep South – a home cleaning service which operates in some of South Africa’s major cities, joined Azania Mosaka to share details on the purpose the Domestic Workers Act, what you should be paying your domestic worker and seeing the home as a professional work environment.

“Gardeners, drivers, au pairs, anyone helping looking after elders, a nurse, those all fall under the banner of domestic workers.”

— Aisha Pandor, CEO and founder of Sweep South

“When it comes to wages, what government is trying to do is address historical inequalities and discrimination, abuse and exploitation. At the same time I think government is cognisant of the fact that many South Africans who employ domestic workers are not in a position to pay what I think most people would constitute a decent living wage and so we have a minimum wage that caters for domestic workers, it is about 75% of the rate of the national minimum wage…”

— Aisha Pandor, CEO and founder of Sweep South

“Speaking on living and working conditions, Pandor says for a live-in domestic worker the expectation is that you are compliant with the constitution and South African labour regulations.”

“The expectation is…what any decent person would consider decent conditions – to have private space that is reasonably livable and be able to retire into that space. For example, a situation where you are a live-in domestic worker but then people are using that to abuse your working hours and call on you at any hour of the day, that is illegal. It has to go hand in hand with what the law says around working hours as well.”

— Aisha Pandor, CEO and founder of Sweep South

This article was first published by on the 24th January 2019.