Tyre industry workers may strike

2010-08-05 10:04

The National Union of Metalworkers of SA (Numsa) said it had been issued with a certificate to embark on a protected strike and that in due course the New Tyre Manufacturers Employers’ Association (NTMEA) would be served with a 48 hours’ strike notice.

“The strike will have a major impact on the economy with dire consequences for car production,” the union said in a statement.

It said it had been negotiating with the NTMEA on wage increases and working conditions since April this year.

“These negotiations were conducted to renew a three-year industry agreement that was entered into in 2007 and has since expired.”

Numsa said the negotiations reached a deadlock last month and a recent extraordinary session had led to a collapse of negotiations.

The union has demanded a 16% wage increment across the board.

It has also requested paid time off for education and training as well as six months paid maternity leave and five days paternity leave without any loss of benefits.

Its demands included the abolition of labour brokers as well as compliance with occupational health and safety legislation in general.

Numsa wanted the bargaining agreement to be effective from July 1 this year to June 30 next year.

“These demands by workers are consistent with the Freedom Charter, the over-arching policy document of our revolutionary ANC which called for work and security for all.”

Numsa said that while it was “still open for engagement”, the failure by the NTMEA to consider and agree to its demands would result in strike action.

The Port Elizabeth-based NTMEA could not comment immediately.

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