The Congress of South African Trade Unions fully support the upcoming NEHAWU Community Healthcare Workers’ national strike, starting tomorrow-11 November 2020. We agree and fully support NEHAWU’s push for all CHWs to be permanently employed and for their working conditions to be improved. This issue of campaigning in support of all vulnerable workers is a priority issue and a clear mandate for the federation that came out of the 13th COSATU National Congress.
Vulnerable workers, Informal employment has been growing steadily in South Africa. The growth has been facilitated by an increase in sub-contracting, outsourcing and homeworking arrangements, the growing use of temporary employment services, and schemes to turn employees into independent contractors.
As a result, there is a rising number of vulnerable workers who are not protected by bargaining council agreements and are excluded from traditional social security nets for the employed. Informality as we have learned through COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many workers who are highly vulnerable due to a lack of social security nets falling through the cracks of unemployment insurance.
Given the extremely high level of structural unemployment in South Africa, this is a big challenge that needs to be addressed and strategies are needed to organise and service these workers.
We call on all workers and unions to rally behind NEHAWU’s campaign and strike. The government cannot be allowed to be the one that undermines the working conditions of vulnerable workers.
Issued by COSATU
Sizwe Pamla (Cosatu National Spokesperson)
Tel: 011 339 4911
Fax: 011 339 508