Background for Solidarity recruitment campaign in the midst of the Covid-19 crisis
The virus is reaching its peak. People are sick and suffering. However, the economic consequences are even more destructive than the virus. The peak of the economic crisis still lies ahead. It is a peak that will last longer than the virus itself.
The Sunday newspaper Rapport talks about a massacre of job losses. Economists warn that unemployment could rise to 40%, and some even warn that 50% is possible. Rapport referred to a survey that found that as many as 3 million South Africans could lose their jobs.
Major companies involved in retrenchments include Edcon, SAA, SASOL, Media24, Comair and more. Salaries are being cut at Denel, ArchelorMittal, schools, medical companies and hundreds of other small businesses, especially in the manufacturing industry.
The biggest fluctuations in the South African workforce still lie ahead.
Salaries are cut, staff numbers are reduced, overtime is taken away and conditions of service are changed.
Storm clouds are gathering, and major upheavals in the workplace are coming. If you are in your own little boat in the midst of this storm, the waves might capsize you. You will be much safer if you are on board the large Solidarity ship.
Solidarity’s key function is to protect work during a crisis. The Solidarity ship was built for exactly that.
Ordinary people who work are totally exposed. It will be a frightening experience to get caught alone in the workplace during this crisis.
In these difficult times, Solidarity is there for you. Individual employees can get trapped in the huge gears of Covid-19 workplace restructuring.
Solidarity has retrained its workforce to assist people during this major restructuring of the workforce that is taking place.
We see the grief and concerns of dozens of people who knock on Solidarity’s door every day; people who are not members. The challenges facing Solidarity’s members at this time are just so huge that Solidarity cannot assist non-members as well during this time.
However, Solidarity members enjoy protection during these restructurings. They are not alone.
We have a legal department consisting of 45 people, and we have 60 labour relations specialists in the field. Their goal is to strengthen people caught in a storm.
Solidarity is geared to step in with regard to its traditional industries, with excellent structures and trained staff that protect employees through collective bargaining and labour relations.
Solidarity also assists individuals. Individuals in small businesses, among others, are very exposed.
Solidarity now also organises people according to their professions. People such as medical practitioners, financial advisors, social workers, attorneys and engineers who, traditionally, did not become members of Solidarity, can now assist each other together with their professional colleagues within the Solidarity Occupational Guilds.
Solidarity members enjoy protection, but members may have a brother, sister, father, mother, cousin, niece, nephew or friend who is not a member.
We want to ask every Solidarity member to encourage people you know who have a job but are not members, to join Solidarity.
No-one can afford to be alone in the workplace at this time.
Everyone will be affected by this crisis, but not everyone will be protected.