The Congress of South African Trade Unions wishes its affiliate the National Education Health and Allied Workers Union a successful 12th National Congress. The 12th National Congress of NEHAWU is starting tomorrow 03rd of November 2021 at Birchwood Hotel, Boksburg under the theme; “Strengthen workplace organisation to defend collective bargaining, deepen class consciousness and advance internationalism”
NEHAWU is joining a list of COSATU unions that are honouring the federation’s founding principles of democracy and worker control. We salute the fact that even under difficult and deadly conditions because of COVID-19, the union is not making excuses but is convening its congress to prove that it remains accountable to its members.
The Federation acknowledges the hard work that has been done by NEHAWU structures to defend workers under COVID-19 and their overall posture in improving health and safety at the workplace, while also defending collective bargaining in the sectors where the union is organised.
This congress is taking place at a time of heightened offensive against the workers and working class in general locally and abroad. We are in an age where there is centralization and concentration of capital and wealth in the hands of a few, and we hope the delegates on this congress will answer some of the most urgent questions facing the working class.
The nature and quality of our public service, health, and safety of our members, agencification of the state, transformation of our healthcare, and the impact of budget cuts are some of the issues that the union can help the workers navigate.
NEHAWU is well placed to answer some of these questions. But we also expect the union to grapple with the scourge of women abuse and gender-based violence that has engulfed this country. Women are not just abused and killed but they continue to be discriminated against both in society and in the workplace.
The workplace environment is constantly characterised by gender and economic discrimination, women workers conditions are least protected, economic, and maternity protection remains a matter of concern. When women drop out of the labour force to bear and raise children, they typically suffer consequences in terms of career progression and retirement/social security benefits and lose out more on their annual earnings.
COSATU expects all its unions and members to prioritise the fight against patriarchy and women exploitation.
We wish all the delegates productive discussions and hope they will continue the union’s tradition of innovative and discerning analysis of issues facing the labour movement and our education system.
We wish NEHAWU a successful and productive national congress.
Long Live NEHAWU! Long Live!
Issued by COSATU
Sizwe Pamla (Cosatu National Spokesperson)
Tel: 011 339 4911
Cell: 060 975 6794