Employers in the metals sector in the country are in for a hard time and so is the economy of South Africa.

The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) has put out its list of demands for this year‚ just as the annual “strike season” draws closer.

“The employers in our sectors must make real offers to settle‚” Numsa said in a statement on Wednesday. The main specific bargaining demands which the conference agreed to put forward in different sectors are: – One-year agreement for 2016-2017 – 20% wage increases – Extension of agreements to salaried staff – Medical aid schemes to be paid on the basis of 80% by employers‚ 20% by employees – Insourcing of outsourced work – R5‚000 per month housing allowance – Ban labour brokers.

“We are guided by the 2016 Numsa National Bargaining Conference on 24 April 2016 whose theme was ‘End the Economy for the 1%‚ Secure our Jobs on a Living Wage 2016’. The union will never accept that workers must pay for an economic crisis that is none of their making‚ but a structural crisis of a global monopoly capitalist system. We will not compromise our members‚” Numsa said.

Among the employers facing these demands are the motor sector‚ automotive sector‚ Eskom as well as tyre and battery manufacturers.

“Collective Bargaining presents the biggest challenge to our members. We are determined not to submit to blackmail and threats from greedy bosses and to show that unity‚ solidarity and strength can win real improvements for our members and in doing so persuade other workers to join the union and fight back. We must not lose this opportunity. For workers it is a life-and-death issue. In this sense Numsa sees a volatile 2016 collective bargaining season‚” Numsa said.

A strike in these sectors could deal South Africa a big blow just after Toyota announced a R6.1-billion investment into its plant in Durban.

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