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Search author name words: Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front

CSAAWU South Africa: Plea for assistance

category southern africa | workplace struggles | appeal / petition author Wednesday November 19, 2014 04:03author by Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front - ZACFauthor email zacf at riseup dot net Report this post to the editors

Help keep CSAAWU's doors open – An injury to one is an injury to all!

We are writing to you out of solidarity for CSAAWU, a union based amongst farmworkers in South Africa with which we have relations. In 2012/3 South African farmworkers rebelled against the deplorable conditions in the sector – for which hundreds were dismissed and victimized. CSAAWU is one of the few unions that organises in this difficult and under-represented industry. In the aftermath of the rebellion it took a decision to take up the struggle, including by defending close to 100 workers in the labour court.
10170935_396142273860594_8013352971820945983_n.jpg

Dear Comrades,

We are writing to you out of solidarity for CSAAWU, a union based amongst farmworkers in South Africa with which we have relations. In 2012/3 South African farmworkers rebelled against the deplorable conditions in the sector – for which hundreds were dismissed and victimized. CSAAWU is one of the few unions that organises in this difficult and under-represented industry. In the aftermath of the rebellion it took a decision to take up the struggle, including by defending close to 100 workers in the labour court.

Unfortunately the union lost two of the cases and has been issued with cost orders in excess of R600 000 (US$ 53 500 or EUR 43 000). This is a very high amount in South Africa, one that is potentially fatally crippling for a smaller union like CSAAWU. (Anyone needing more information can have a look at this article)

We are therefore forwarding you their plea (see below) and hope that you will consider supporting their request for help. Please also considering forwarding this to sympathetic organisations and/or publishing it widely.

Red and Black regards,

The ZACF


Original message:

Dear Friends and Comrades

In the coming months CSAAWU may be forced to close its doors.

It will be a devastating defeat for CSAAWU members and farmworkers in South Africa for many years to come if CSAAWU can’t be saved! We need many hands (bodies and hearts) on board to keep CSAAWU doors open!

CSAAWU made a decision to defend all farmworkers who were dismissed or victimized in the aftermath of the 2012/3 farmworker rebellion. Amongst CSAAWU members alone, there were close to 100 dismissal cases. CSAAWU went as far as to take dismissal cases to the Labour Court. This was the first time since 1994 that farmworkers were heard in the Labour Court.

The Labour Court issued devastating judgements against the dismissed workers and CSAAWU. CSAAWU lost two of the cases and cost orders were awarded against the union. The judgement rebuked individual union officials for supporting the strike, deeming this reckless and irresponsible behaviour. CSAAWU paid a high price for its position to support the struggle of farmworkers. CSAAWU believes that it can never be wrong for a union to support the strike action workers, especially the most vulnerable workers, when they stand up against their exploitative conditions.

The cost orders of R600,000 against the union could force the union to close its doors unless we all build solidarity and support for CSAAWU!

CSAAWU is developing a fundraising website. We are collecting testimonials of our members for the website and would also like to publicise statements from organizations/individuals in support of keeping CSAAWU doors open!

Please email us your words of support, encouraging others to stand in solidarity with CSAAWU! Feel free to contact us if you need more information.

The fundraising campaign and website will be launched in the coming weeks. Watch out for it!

KEEP CSAAWU DOORS OPEN!

“CSAAWU means everything to me. CSAAWU taught me to believe in myself and showed us how important we are farmworkers are. CSAAWU’s doors can’t be closed because it will break the workers confidence. Long live CSAAWU!” (Mercia Plaatjies, Koo).

Follow CSAAWU on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/vivacsaawu

Related Link: http://zabalaza.net

Dismissed farmworkers supported by CSAAWU
Dismissed farmworkers supported by CSAAWU

csaawubanner.jpg

author by M - Freeter Union(Tokyo)publication date Fri Nov 21, 2014 21:02Report this post to the editors

Hi,I translated this article to Japanes and posted to my blog. I hope that was ok?I'll be discussing in my union if we could write a statement.Keep me updated about fundraising campaign page.

In solidarity

M

http://poderpopular.hatenablog.com/entry/2014/11/21/212849

author by W.S.A. - W.S.A.publication date Sat Nov 22, 2014 01:44Report this post to the editors

WSA posted this on their FB page. We encourage others to do the same.

"Dear CSAAWU comrades..... The U.S. based Workers Solidarity Alliance (WSA) sends you our warm and heartfelt greetings and solidarity. There's an old U.S. union saying: "Don't let the bastards grind you down!"....Amandla! Forward to victory!"

author by Jon - 1 of Anarkismo Editorial Grouppublication date Fri Dec 05, 2014 23:12Report this post to the editors

Thanks absolutely perfect M – thank you! Have you had the discussion with your union yet? If so, what did they say?

If you're bored and looking for something to translate ;) there's also this:

Related Link: http://zabalaza.net/2013/02/09/reaping-what-you-sow-ref...rike/
author by Jon - 1 of Anarkismo Editorial Grouppublication date Fri Dec 05, 2014 23:15Report this post to the editors

Please be advised that CSAAWU has now set up a bank account for their campaign to keep the union's doors open.

You can find the bank/donation details here: http://csaawu.alwaysdata.net/donate/

Further background information to the farmworkers' strike and subsequent dismissals, legal charges and awarding of costs against the union etc. can be found on the website: http://csaawu.org/

See the ZACF's Shawn Hattingh's Reaping What You Sow: Reflections on the Western Cape Farm Workers Strike for an anarchist communist analysis of the strike.

If any donations are made, either by individuals or organisations, as a result of the ZACF appeal please be sure to send a notification to CSAAWU at csaawutav[at]gmail[dot]com and to copy zacf[at]riseup[dot]net in same.

Help keep CSAAWU's doors open – an injury to one is an injury to all!

Related Link: http://csaawu.org/
author by M - Freeter union tokyopublication date Fri Dec 05, 2014 23:46Report this post to the editors

Thanks for the update,Jon. I talked about it briefly in our union meeting, they are waiting for a draft of solidarity statement I'm working on. I'd like to translate the article you mentioned for further information.

author by M - General Freeter Union(FZRK:Freeter Zenpan Roudou Kumiai),Tokyopublication date Thu Dec 11, 2014 11:18Report this post to the editors

Hi
Below is the solidarity statement from General Freeter Union
I've emailed Keep CSAAWU Doors Open contact,too.

**********

Satement:We support dismissed farmworkers,Solidarity to the fight to keep its union CSAAWU open!

In South Africa,farm workers facing casualization and racism has been dismissed after going on strike.
The Labour Court called the union irresponsible for supporting the farmworkers' strike,and the judgement was unjust.

CSAAWU,the union which organize the farmworkers is forced to pay R600 000 for cost orders.This financial burden will mean a threat to closure for CSAAWU.
Also,this is is an attempt to minimise the power to protest the empleyors who gain profit from casualization of work.

As an union organizing workers in unstable condition,who may not find unions to fight their cause with easily,this situation concerns us,too.
We support the farmworkers who went on strike by their own decisions.Solidarity with the fight to keep its union open!

General Freeter Union(FZRK:Freeter Zenpan Roudou Kumiai),Tokyo

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