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Major supports to COSATU strike, SACTWU
09
Mar '12
Andre Kriel, General Secretary of Southern African Clothing & Textile Workers' Union (SACTWU) issued a final report on support by clothing, textile, footwear and leather workers for today's national Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) protest action against labour brokers.

South Africa's workers again demonstrated their mass support for COSATU's decent work programme of action, by protesting in huge numbers against the problem of labour brokering. Workers in the clothing, textile, footwear and leather industry nationally supported this action too. In most parts of the country the industry has come to a standstill.

SACTWU conducted a country-wide survey of the clothing, textile, footwear and leather industry, using information supplied by company employer representatives and/or shop stewards. The survey covered 562 factories employing 64,800 employees.

Information available indicates that 62% of all clothing, textile, footwear and leather workers are participating in the protest action. Since 101,300 workers are employed in the industry nationally, this means that 62,800 workers from the industry countrywide were involved in this action.

SACTWU denounces labour brokering as a form of human trafficking. It feeds off workers, robbing them of a decent income, denying them job security and converting humans into simple commodities that can be discarded at will. Labour brokering is growing within some of the sectors in which SACTWU organises. This tendency must be stopped in its tracks.

We have managed to have the practice prohibited in parts of the local textile manufacturing sector. We intend to achieve the same in all the other sectors in which we operate. Labour brokering does not contribute to the sustainable development of the industry since it adds to the de-skilling of workers with short-term, irregular and uncertain contracts with indecent employment practices.

Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers Union

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