NUMSA commemorates the 100 year anniversary of the Russian Revolution

NUMSA members at Whirlpool are on strike!

7 November 2017, Posted in Press Releases

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (NUMSA) has gone on strike at Whirlpool the appliance manufacturer in Kwa-Zulu Natal. At least 900 workers including non-union members have downed tools since Monday because the employer is refusing to engage on their demands for housing.

NUMSA has been negotiating with the employer to try and resolve the impasse but to date no progress has been made. Workers at Whirlpool have made it clear that they will not return to work until the employer agrees to provide housing as part of the wage agreement.

The lowest paid worker at Whirlpool earns R43 per hour and this makes accessing decent accommodation almost impossible. In South Africa more than 50% of the population live in poverty as a result of earning starvation wages.  The vast majority of workers are treated like animals and dumped in cramped informal slums and shanty towns where there is no access to basic services like water or electricity. Furthermore the lack of electricity in the slums means that workers and their families are also often victims of violent crime.

Workers at Whirlpool are responsible for making some of the most popular home appliances. Their labour is the reason so many homes are decorated with beautiful appliances. Workers are directly responsible for the success of the company and the production of these goods. It is their sweat and toil which contributes to the massive popularity and the profits which the company has made. They deserve to live in decent homes where they can raise their families with dignity.

It is in this context we believe that our demand for housing is reasonable and justifiable. We urge the management of Whirlpool to engage with us so we can resolve the deadlock.

Aluta continua!

The struggle continues!

Issued by Mbuso Ngubane

NUMSA KZN Regional Secretary