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Interdict issued against striking Gauteng health workers

The Gauteng Health Department has secured a court interdict against striking public healthcare workers after Tuesday’s wage-related demonstrations, when staff disrupted operations at both Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital in Soweto and Sebokeng Hospital and chased away patients.

The unions have rejected the government’s offer of 3% pensionable funds and 4.5% non-pensionable funds, demanding a 10% increase, reports EWN.

Department spokesperson Motalatale Modiba said: “Part of the interdict is that the South African Police Service has also been ordered to assist … to enforce the interim order, which will remain in effect pending the return court date on 1 March 2023.”

Leaders of public service unions affiliated to Cosatu, Fedusa and the SA Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) warned they would embark on a strike on 2 December if the government does not respond to demands for the pay hike of 10% within seven days.

They said the “total shutdown” would affect almost all government services, with nurses, the police and other departmental officials expected to down tools.

“We have already issued a notice at Nedlac (the National Economic Development and Labour Council); it’s up to them to invite the total shutdown or block it,” said Simon Hlungwani, convener of Cosatu’s joint mandating committee, who is also president of the Democratic Nursing Organisation of SA (Denosa).

The unions also demanded an end to austerity measures, the permanent employment of community health workers, teacher assistants and reservists; the filling of all vacant posts, and insourcing of outsourced services, among other things, reports BusinessLIVE.

Bhekisisa journalist Jesse Copelyn was inside Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital, where doctors arrived at work on Tuesday morning to find they would have to take on the nurses’ responsibilities on top of their own. See her live updates below.

 

 Bhekisisa – go-inside-sas-biggest-hospital-during-a-national-strike/

EWN article – Gauteng Health Dept secures interdict against striking public healthcare workers (Open access)

 

BusinessLIVE article – Government workers threaten ‘total shutdown’ for higher pay (Open access)

 

See more from MedicalBrief archives:

 

Human Rights Commission: Hospital strike was a human rights violation

 

Charlotte Maxeke workers disciplined for human rights violations

 

Denosa threatens ‘pyjama strike’ over unpaid nursing uniform allowances

 

Cabinet places North West Health under administration after strike violence

 

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