COSATU welcomes Parliament’s adoption of ILO Convention 190 on the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work 02 September 2021

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) welcomes Parliament’s adoption of International Labour Organisation (ILO) Convention 190 on the Elimination of Violence and Harassment in the World of Work.  

The Federation and its Affiliates have been at the forefront leading the campaign for South Africa to ratify this crucial ILO Convention. We have done so as part of our gender rights programme of action, which includes taking a firm and unwavering stand against gender-based violence.  It is symbolically fitting that Parliament’s adoption comes as South Africa concludes women’s month. 

What remains to be done is for government to inform the ILO that South Africa has now joined the ranks of nations that have ratified it.  Government must also nudge other ILO member states along so that they too ratify it, and it becomes a binding Convention for the international community.

Whilst we are of the view that the ratification process could have been done quicker, COSATU is pleased that there is now no turning back from converting this progressive tool in the fight against workplace harassment and violence to a central pillar of our employment law regime.

Its ratification will be a critical boost in the fight against the pandemic of Gender Based Violence that women are subject to across countless workplaces.

The Department of Employment and Labour and social partners at Nedlac need to immediately begin engaging on a review of our labour and criminal legislation to ensure that they are in full compliance with the progressive provisions of Convention 190 and where amendments are needed, to fast track these.

Issued by COSATU.

For further information please contact: 

Matthew Parks

COSATU Parliamentary Coordinator

Cell: 082 785 0687