The Essential Services Committee is established in terms of Section 70 of the Labour Relations Act
The functions of the Committee are to:
- To monitor the implementation and observance of essential services determinations, minimum services agreements, maintenance services agreements and determinations.
- To promote effective dispute resolution in essential services.
- To develop guidelines for the negotiation of minimum services agreements.
- To decide, on its own initiative or at the reasonable request of any interested party, whether or not the whole or a part of any service is an essential service.
The Committee may only determine a service as essential where, in terms of Section 213 of the Act, it can be shown that an interruption of that service would, ‘endanger the life, personal safety or health of the whole or any part of the population’. Moreover, it would have to be established that a clear and imminent threat to the life, personal safety or health of the whole or part of the population existed.