National 31.8.2016 06:11 am

Domestic workers plan big protest

Domestic Workers sing ahead of the arrival of EFF Commander in Chief, Julius Malema, 30 August 2015, in San Kopano Hall in Alexandra, Johannesburg, for a Domestic Worker meeting. The political party listened to the struggles of these workers to raise these points in parliament. Picture: Alaister Russell

Domestic Workers sing ahead of the arrival of EFF Commander in Chief, Julius Malema, 30 August 2015, in San Kopano Hall in Alexandra, Johannesburg, for a Domestic Worker meeting. The political party listened to the struggles of these workers to raise these points in parliament. Picture: Alaister Russell

She said the labour laws for workers were in black and white but employers were not complying.

The sexual harassment of domestic workers by male employers will form part of a massive protest scheduled in Gauteng and Western Cape.

Other core issues that will emerge during the protest are the noncompliance of employers with the labour laws and poor working conditions workers are subjected to.

The protest, which is expected to draw about 3 000 domestic workers under the South African Domestic Domestic Services and Allied Workers Union (Sadswu) and Cosatu in Springs, Gauteng, and others outside parliament in Cape Town, will be staged on October 1.

Cosatu’s national gender coordinator, Gertrude Mtsweni, said most employers did not comply with labour laws.

They subjected workers to long hours of work with no pay. Also, many were employed, yet they were not registered with the department of labour for the unemployment insurance fund (UIF).

She said the labour laws for workers were in black and white but employers were not complying.

Sadswu’s general secretary, Myrtle Witbooi, said they would stage a protest outside parliament, as they wanted to direct their complaints to Minister of Labour Mildred Oliphant.

Witbooi said many domestic workers were still not registered and they got paid R2 500, which did not constitute a decent living wage for the workers. Witbooi added that sexual harassment was also an issue and that many were afraid to speak out as they feared losing their jobs.

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