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The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) recognizes and acknowledges the socio-economic inequalities and challenges that face our communities, and the disparities that persist due to poverty and subsequent social ills.

It is in this view that the FEDUSA in conjunction with its Affiliate, the Health and Other Service Personnel Trade Union of South Africa (HOSPERSA) are working together in remembrance and continuation of celebrating the life of the late Former President, Nelson Mandela. HOSPERSA and FEDUSA will be at the Kalafong Hospital in Atteridgeville, Pretoria on 18 July 2014 to distribute soup packs to those families that are in dire need and without anything warm to eat or drink this winter.

Though this will not make a world of difference considering the population of our country in terms of poverty and unemployment, we are hoping that this gesture is warmly received.

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FEDUSA is the largest politically non-aligned trade union federation in South Africa and represents a diverse membership from a variety of sectors in industry.  See www.fedusa.org.za for more information.

For more information:

Ruby Oliver (Acting General Secretary) 084 250 0269

The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) is concerned over the further raising of interest rates and the effects this will have on the economy.  Rising inflation is putting upward pressure on interest rates – with interest rate increases eating into the circular flow of money and spending – thereby slowing consumer and economic activity.

The South African Reserve Bank (SARB) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) announced yesterday afternoon that it will raise the repurchase rate by 0.25 basis points to 5.75 per cent per annum, as of 18 July 2014.

We are a little disappointed with this decision, said FEDUSA Acting General Secretary Ruby Oliver.  With a considerable weakening of the rand over the last 3 years, coupled with rising food and energy costs, the majority of South Africans are finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet – and these interest rate increases are simply not sustainable, she added.

Low inflation is in the interests of all sectors of society, especially the poor. Given the impact of high interest rates on access to capital and therefore economic growth and job creation – and it is for these reasons that we believe high interest rates create barriers to inclusive economic growth, explained Oliver.

Policies influencing macroeconomic indicators must prioritise the need for higher growth levels, employment creation and general socio-economic well-being, concluded Oliver.

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FEDUSA is the largest politically non-aligned trade union federation in South Africa and represents a diverse membership from a variety of sectors in industry.  See www.fedusa.org.za for more information.

For more information:

Ruby Oliver (Acting General Secretary) 084 250 0269

10th July 2014, 04H00 – Bloemfontein

Over 100 community healthcare workers and Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) members were arrested during the early hours of this morning by police in Bloemfontein following a night vigil sit-in at Bophelo House, the head office of the Free State Department of Health. The vigil started last night. The group, mostly elder women, have been taken to Park Road Police Station in Bloemfontein. They had been relieved of their duties as community healthcare workers without any notice and attempts to engage decision makers have been fruitless. A TAC leader in the Free State was assaulted by police during the arrests and has bruises to his face.

The community healthcare workers staged the sit in after months of trying to engage Malakoane and his officials. They had previously demanded a meeting with Free State MEC of Health Benny Malakoane following a sit in at Bophelo House on 27th June. Earlier written requests have also led to zero. Both Magashule and Malakoane have consistently ignored the plight of the community health workers. This latest sit-in signalled the start of a campaign of civil disobedience in the Free State to demand that Malakoane be removed from his position given the desperate state of the health system in the province.

Those taking part in the sit-in were exercising their constitutional right to speak out against the failings in and collapse of the Free State health system. The TAC condemns the police for the excessive use of force in arresting the peaceful protesters. The TAC have sent an urgent request to ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe for an urgent meeting and will also be contacting National Health Minister Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.

Please follow @TAC on Twitter and #FSHealthCrisis for continuous updates from the scene in Bloemfontein.


For more information contact:

Anele Yawa, TAC General Secretary – 079 328 1215

Sello Mokhalipi, TAC Free State Chairperson – 078 927 2369

Read our press statement from 9th July here: http://www.tac.org.za/news/tac-embark-civil-disobedience-free-state

The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) calls for a minimum wage of R2500 for domestic workers per month; and calls on the Minister of Labour, the Department of Labour and the Employment Conditions Commission (ECC) to move beyond the mechanical approach of using CPI plus two percent to a new methodology of taking the actual circumstances of domestic workers into consideration. FEDUSA is of the opinion that CPI is not a true reflection of the actual inflation that is experienced by domestic workers, as privately owned profit-driven minibus taxis are quick to increase fees when fuel prices increase but never reduce fees when fuel prices decrease, said Dennis George FEDUSA General Secretary.

More than 652 000 domestic workers are registered with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) – but FEDUSA is of the opinion that many employers of domestic workers have not registered for unemployment insurance for domestic workers.

FEDUSA recognise and acknowledge that many families are paying domestic workers more than the minimum wage and also provide in some cases accommodation and meals. The Federation is also grateful and deeply appreciative that some families also provide other support to our domestic workers in the form of education, funeral policies, provident fund contributions and medical expenses. FEDUSA values the contribution that domestic workers make to economic development, as they are an extension of our families. An increasing number of women have entered the labour market and this has created a huge demand for a person to provide support for families where both parents are working. Without this valuable economic contribution of domestic workers, progress would not be possible for many working families in our country, and these workers are also sometimes even required to walk our children to school and back.

FEDUSA argues that it is therefore imperative for employers of domestic workers to discuss the socio-economic concerns of their workers when determining decent remuneration and benefits, as we move beyond the mechanical approach of using the average inflation. Employers should rather utilise the actual transport cost of their domestic workers to determine the decent salary moving beyond the current minimum wage. These gestures will greatly contribution to eradicate poverty and inequality – and build and strengthen social cohesion and nation building, said George.

FEDUSA was part of the official delegation of government, labour and business to the International Labour Conference – where the International Labour Organisation Convention 189 and Recommendation 201 (Concerning Decent Work for Domestic Workers) were negotiated and adopted. The Federation calls on Parliament to ratify these international instruments to ensure the human rights, decent working conditions and privacy of domestic workers are respected in South Africa, concluded George.

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FEDUSA is the largest politically non-aligned trade union federation in South Africa and represents a diverse membership from a variety of sectors in industry.  See www.fedusa.org.za for more information.

For interviews:

Dennis George (FEDUSA General Secretary) 084 805 1529

Martlé Keyter (FEDUSA Vice President – Social Justice) 082 856 2496

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