Labour Brokers Bad for SA Workers, but Trade Unions Not Much Better

8 Mar 2012

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Over the last 15 years we've seen the emergence and growth of the practice of labour broking in South Africa, which places workers, particularly those employed on the lowest rungs of the South African economy, in a very precarious position with respect to job security and a host of related quality of life indicators.

Ighsaan Schroeder of the Casual Workers Advice Office explains Why Cosatu called for a general strike against the practice of labour broking. However, he argues that the trade union federation’s call for a ban on labour brokers is highly problematic for a number of reasons, not least of which is Cosatu's inability to respond to the changing nature of the South African work force.

He ventures further to say that the demise of the traditional trade union model is imminent. In Schroeder's view, it may not be too long before Cosatu itself disappears.

"I'd be surprised if Cosatu is still here in 15 years time," he contends.

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