Union activists from the big four global delivery firms based in South Africa put their heads together recently to talk about ways of improving workers’ rights.
The unionists from across South Africa met in Pretoria from 9 – 11 November. The event was split into two sessions, with DHL unionists meeting on 9 November and activists from Fedex, UPS and TNT joining the group on 10 and 11 November. South African Transport and Allied Workers’ Union deputy general secretary of the Nicholus Maziya and president Ephraim Mphahlele addressed the DHL meeting, which was chaired by deputy chairperson of the Gauteng Province, Liver Mngomezulu.
The Maltese ITF affiliate, the General Workers’ Union (GWU), has been granted sole and exclusive union representation of employees at DHL Express Malta, a subsidiary of DHL Global. The subsidiary is responsible for the distribution of packages and express mail across more than 220 countries world-wide.
Representatives of the TUC, the ITF, NASUWT and Unison are meeting with Bahrain’s Ambassador to the UK in London today to register a joint protest over the treatment of workers and demonstrators in the Gulf state.
Dr Kate Webb reports for the ITF on why November is going to be a critical month in the Kingdom of Bahrain. Tomorrow, November 15th, three officers of the Gulf Air union will appear in court on unspecified charges concerning “national security”. In a fortnight a group of sports journalists and athletes that includes the country’s top-scoring footballer, A’ala Hubail, are to be tried for “illegal assembly and inciting hatred against the regime”, and on November 28, the doctors arrested at the Salmaniya Medical Complex, already tried in a military court, will, after international outcry, be retried in a civilian court.
Workers at DHL in Malta have taken the unprecedented step of joining a trade union. A majority of DHL employees at the Malta branch recently became members of the General Workers’ Union (GWU); they were organised within the union’s professionals, finance and services section.