COSATU Women’s Resolution

This Federation noting:

1. That women workers experience both exploitation as workers and oppression as women and that Black women are further discriminated against on the basis of race;

2. That women are employed in a limited range of occupations, doing boring and repetitive work with low and often unequal pay;

3. That due to overtime and night work women workers are subjected to many dangers while commuting;

4. That women workers often suffer sexual harassment in recruitment and employment;

5. That most women workers in South Africa lose their jobs when they become pregnant;

6. That pregnant women often have to work under conditions harmful to themselves and their unborn child.

Resolves to fight:

1. Against all unequal and discriminatory treatment of women at work, in society and in the federation;

2. For the equal right of women and men to paid work as an important part of the broader aim to achieve full and freely chosen employment:

3. For equal pay for all work of equal value-the value of work must be determined by organised women and men workers themselves;

4. For the restructuring of employment so as to allow women and men the opportunity of qualifying for jobs of equal value;

5. For childcare and family facilities to meet workers’ needs and make it easier for workers to combine work and family responsibilities;

6. For full maternity rights, including paid maternity and paternity leave and job security;

7. For the protection of women and men from all types of work proved to be harmful to them, including work which interferes with their ability to have children;

8. Against sexual harassment in whatever form it occurs;

9. For adequate and safe transport for workers doing overtime and night work.

Now commits itself:

1. To actively campaign in support of these resolutions;

2. To negotiate agreements with companies wherever possible as part of this campaign;

3. To actively promote within its education programme, a greater understanding of the specific discriminations suffered by women workers and ways in which these can be overcome;

4. To establish a worker-controlled subcommittee within its education programme to monitor progress made in implementing this resolution and to make representations to the education committee;

5. To budget for the workings of such a sub-committee;

6. To actively promote the necessary confidence and experience amongst women workers so that they can participate fully at all levels of the federation. Proposed by Commercial Catering & Allied Workers Union of South Africa

Reprinted from Congress News, the paper of the new federation, COSATU

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