Today's Labour News

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protestGroundUp reports that on the last day of women’s month, 31 August, more than 200 women farm workers marched to the provincial legislature in Cape Town and then to the Department of Labour.  

The protest was organised by the Women on Farms Project (WFP), a non-governmental organisation that promotes the rights of women who work in commercial agriculture in the Western and Northern Cape.  The march followed a presentation by WFP of recent research on violations of labour law on commercial farms.  The study used information from 343 questionnaires completed by women farmworkers.  It found that 75% of seasonal workers in the sample were not paid the minimum wage.  Farm workers also reported health and sanitation concerns.  72% of women seasonal workers indicated there was a lack of toilet facilities where they worked, and that they were forced to use “a bush or a secluded spot”.  The study concluded that “farmers are systematically violating laws that were introduced to protect and advance the rights of farm workers”.  The Department of Labour responded to the protesters, stating:  “We are listening, and we will respond …Thank you for your unity, and thank you for standing up for your rights.”

  • Read this informative report by Laura Bratton in full at GroundUp

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