The impact of Covid-19 on South African migrant wage workers and the self-employed

Classified as essential workers, farm workers were “lucky enough” to continue working and earning an income. Yet, this paper highlights how Covid-19 regulations exacerbated their vulnerability due to a pre-existing lack of public regulation and enforcement of basic labour and transport regulation in the sector. Apart from farm workers, the paper also discusses how informal workers – in this case taxi drivers – tried to leverage the pandemic to push for closer integration into the agricultural sector to create more sustainable livelihoods for themselves.

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