South African transport workers face many challenges including violence against women workers, unsafe working conditions, failing infrastructure and a chronic lack of investment
The purpose of the symposium was to see if there was a desire to build unity among unions to address these issues for the benefit of organised and unorganised workers.
Jack Mazibuko, general secretary of the South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU), attended the event:
When the unions don’t work together, we send a confused message to the people we are supposed to represent. We need to put our differences to one side and focus on advancing the interests of working people.”
ITF general secretary, Stephen Cotton, spoke at the symposium:
“We understand the impact that a strong message of unity among South African unions would have on unorganised workers. The outcomes from the symposium have gone beyond our expectations and give you the opportunity to change things for the better for working people here.”
Leaders at the symposium agreed in principle a declaration that would establish a forum in which all the unions would develop a common theme and a day of action collectively.
Participants also committed to ensure that the new forum would focus on initiatives to involve women and young workers in those areas in the forum. Currently, both women and young workers are under represented in South Africa’s transport sector.
Valter Sanches, general secretary of IndustriALL Global Union, said:
“Unity is key. We must overcome old structures and divisions and focus collectively on the issues that all working people are facing. Transportation and manufacturing are directly linked through supply chains and economic employers. By being organized and working together we can make a big impact.”
The event was supported by the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung.
Disclaimer: All third-party opinions expressed via IASWI accounts linked to and from this page are those of the individuals concerned and do not necessarily represent those of IASWI or its affiliates. No copyright infringement is intended nor implied. To discuss this disclaimer or the removal of appropriate credit for materials of which you hold copyright please contact us. All the third party videos and contents found on workers-iran.org is not hosted on our servers; all third party videos or contents are hosted on a third party site. The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various authors and news sources on the www.workers-iran.org do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the IASWI or official policies of the IASWI. These posts are only generated for the purpose of information sharing on the labour related issues.