South Africa

South Africa’s Workers Fight Job Losses

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) launched a general strike across eight provinces Wednesday as a warning to South Africa’s governing party, the African National Congress (ANC), to address rampant job losses and unemployment across the public and private sectors. “We are tired of economic growth that does not create employment opportunities, that… [READ MORE]

Union Leaders Mobilize on Gender-Based Violence at Work

Gertrude Mtsweni and Rose Omamo, trade union leaders from Africa, recently joined hundreds of workers who participated with government and employer representatives in high-level deliberations on a draft global standard addressing gender-based violence at work. Energized after long days of intense discussions during the International Labor Organization (ILO) conference in Geneva, the women are now… [READ MORE]

Court Victory, and Challenge, for South African Workers

The Constitutional Court of South Africa determined in a historic ruling late last week that workers placed by labor recruiters must be made permanent after three months at the company where they worked on temporary status, entitling them to the same pay, benefits and job security afforded to full-time employees, but labor organizations expect a… [READ MORE]

Migrant Domestic Worker in South Africa: Better Conditions with Union

Prexedes, a domestic worker from Zimbabwe in South Africa, says migrant workers in South Africa often are paid lower wages and suffer harsher working conditions than their South African counterparts. Supporting her three children on her own, Prexedes struggled to pay for transportation to work and food for her family, and often worked overtime for… [READ MORE]

‘Growing Level of Intolerance against Labor Migrants’

Xenophobia and racism are embedded in the daily economic and social situation of labor migrants and refugees, according to Joseph Rudigi Rukema, a sociology professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. “The world is witnessing a growing level of intolerance against foreign labor migrants, refugee and asylum seekers,” he s­­­­­­ays. Rukema kicked off the afternoon session… [READ MORE]

‘Create Decent Work at Home so Labor Migration Is a Choice’

The respect and dignity of labor migrants is under increasing threat, says Kassahun Follo, first vice president, International Trade Union Confederation-Africa, as migrant workers are demonized and denied basic rights, actions driven by exploitation, racism and xenophobia. Follo spoke this morning at the opening of the January 25–27 Solidarity Center conference, “Achieving Fair Migration: Roles… [READ MORE]

Zimbabwe Migrant Farm Workers See Dawn of Justice

Some of the 245 Zimbabwe migrant farm workers brutalized and evicted last September from a large farm in South Africa, where many had toiled for years, have now been vindicated in court. In a recent court hearing in South Africa, a judge rejected the farm owner’s argument that the workers were on extended strike and… [READ MORE]

Africa Union Leaders Share Tactics to Empower Workers

Addressing unemployment and underemployment, especially for young workers, is the most pressing issue for trade unions across Africa, according to participants in an African Labor Leaders Exchange Program sponsored by the Solidarity Center. Speaking at a December 9 panel discussion at the AFL-CIO in Washington, D.C., six union leaders from Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria and South… [READ MORE]