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NUMSA to participate in Wage Negotiation Dispute Meetings

27 June 2017, Posted in Press Releases

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) will be participating in wage negotiation dispute meetings with employers in the Engineering sector.

The purpose of the meetings is to resolve the dispute between us and the employer now that we have deadlocked over wages.

Our demands:
We want a 15% in wage increase across the board based on the actual rate that a worker is earning, and not on the minimum rate.
We demand a two year agreement.
We demand the finalization of other outstanding issues during that period.
We demand the extension of the agreement to non-parties; this includes non-parties and Employer associations like NEASA and PCASA who fall under the MEIBC.

Employers demands:
They want a three year wage agreement.
They are offering of 5.3% across the board, for the first year of the agreement, based on the minimum rate, and not the actual rate that workers are earning.
They are offering a pathetic wage increase of 4% minimum for the second and third year of the agreement.
Employers want a 45 work week instead of a 40 hour work week.
Employers are trying reduce the entry level wage to R20 per hour, instead of the standard R40 per hour.
Workers who do not work all their shifts because of maternity leave, sick leave or a protected strike will lose their bonus.

Employers have forced us into a deadlock. They put backward proposals on the table which will worsen the current working conditions, and not improve them. They are trying to implement the ANC’s National Minimum Wage, through the backdoor!! We will block any attempt to impose this poverty wage on our members.

NUMSA will never agree to proposals which will increase the suffering of our members and that is why we have rejected the offer. Employers are hiding behind the junk status of the South African economy to justify poverty wages and sweat shop working conditions!

Cyril Ramaphosa is a sell out for driving the poverty wage of R20 per hour!
Employers are emboldened by the ANC governments neo-liberal economic policies designed to please the insatiable greed of White Monopoly Capital. Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, a former trade unionist is a sell out for driving the implementation of R20 per hour as a minimum wage. To make matters worse, Ramaphosa and the party he leads are responsible for promoting laws which will make it harder for workers to strike.

Employers in the Engineering sector view workers with hatred and contempt. They do not see them as human beings with families to raise who deserve to be treated with dignity. The bosses in the engineering sector are so greedy that they can’t give the lowest paid worker a six rand increase (15% increase) – shame on them! That is why they have put such a pathetic offer on the table.

Instead, the racist, sexist bosses in the engineering sector have made proposals which will force workers to work harder for less money and benefits, whilst they continue to get fat off the sweat of our labour.

NUMSA will not back down and we will not be bullied. If employers wish to avoid a strike they will engage meaningfully with us to resolve the dispute.
The MEIBC will host CCMA facilitated talks to resolve the dispute. They will meet on the 28th & 29th June and again on the 5th & 6th July 2017.

The struggle continues!
Issued by Phakamile Hlubi
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