The Commission of Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) will intervene in an attempt to help the disputing parties in the footwear industry find a settlement.
Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers Union (Sactwu) general secretary Andre Kriel said a meeting was planned for Monday in Durban under the auspices of the CCMA in a bid to end the two-week-long strike.
Sactwu and National Union of Leather and Allied Workers (Nulaw) members downed tools on July 9 after the unions rejected the employers’ final increase offer of 6.25%.
In a joint statement, the two unions said employers represented by the South African Footwear and Leather Industries Association (Saflia) had increased their settlement offer from 6.25% to 7% plus that current family responsibility leave to be applicable to spouses, but only in the event of hospitalisation.
“The unions have met and have jointly rejected the employers’ latest revised offer. In the interest of facilitating a settlement, we have, however, amended our settlement offer, and are now in the process of seeking final mandates from our members for our revised position.”
The unions said that a strike was not their first choice.
“We are not oblivious to the challenges and pressures which the domestic footwear industry is experiencing.
“However, it is our considered opinion that our hardworking members do not deserve a the 6.25% final offer increase which has been tabled, and which they have increased slightly to 7% on Tuesday this week.”