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Housing and Living Conditions Standard for Mines in Place

December 12, 2019

Department of Mineral Resources and Energy

12 December 2019

A Housing and Living Conditions Standard for the mining industry is in place.

The mineral resources and energy department published the Standard in Government Gazette 42899.

The Draft Standard was published for comment in March 2019.

The revised 2019 Standard repeals the 2009 version.

The Standard seeks to ensure that adequate housing, healthcare services, balanced nutrition and water are adequately provided to mine employees in South Africa.

It also aims to ensure that mining companies provide “decent livable integrated human settlements, healthcare services, balanced nutrition, water and related amenities to mine employees.”

In the introduction, the department acknowledges that the local mining industry has made inroads in upgrading hostels and converting them to single accommodation units but emphasizes that there is “still a need to ensure that mining right holders continue to and maintain adequate and liveable housing and living conditions for mine employees”.

Work still needs to be done to ensure that mine employees live in decent accommodation.

The department also calls for the implementation of initiatives such as the Special Presidential Package on revitalisation of ghost mining towns, the Operation Phakisa process and framework agreement to be speeded up.

The overall objective of the Standard is “therefore to provide for housing and living conditions standard with clearly defined principles and processes and to guide mining right holders in providing decent housing and living conditions to mine employees”.

Focus areas of the Standard include mine employees housing conditions principles, housing options, existing mining rights, new mining right, minimum basic services applicable to new and existing mining rights, basic features of a single unit and family unit, principles for living conditions, housing and living conditions plan, contents of a housing and living conditions plan and review of the housing and living conditions standard for the South African mining and minerals industry.

The 2019 Standard came into effect on the date of publication.