Threatened employers lash out
Threatened employers lash out
The new labour law is stirring things up. Employers start to lash out now that more and more workers are claiming their new acquired rights. CWAO has been in the front row to inform and mobilise workers to claim what’s rightfully theirs. We’re new facing possible legal charges because of this but we refuse to be intimidated. We stand strong and united.
It all started with a so-called friendly email from Kirchmanns Inc., a fancy law firm, to point out that the pamphlets of CWAO explaining the new labour law to workers contains “incorrect interpretations” of that law. They felled obliged to tell us that “this pamphlet will create unnecessary tension between employers and employees.”
CWAO strongly feels that any tension between employers and employees is NOT unnecessary. Quite the contrary, a struggle of the working class is necessary and justified. Employers continuously and routinely keep breaking the law and refuse to give workers their rights. All to keep profit and capital in the hands of the few, while the majority lives in poverty and destitution.
It goes without saying that employers will put up a fight. It’s in their interest to keep workers in the dark. Workers who are fearful of their bosses and who above all want to keep their job and livelihood, tend to accept low wages, lack of social protection and bad working conditions. Workers who are well-informed and organised are a genuine threat to the establishment. They will stand up against injustice and abuse, and will challenge their employer.
Kirchmanns Inc. didn’t stop with just one email. The emails and calls kept coming while the tone of their messages got more aggressive. Their last message ended with a very clear threat: “We hereby demand that (…) you immediately cease the distribution of the pamphlets, failing which we will resort to legal action which may include holding you liable for damages suffered by our respective clients.”
Finally their true motivation for contacting us is revealed. It’s not a genuine concern for social peace that motivated them, but the cheques offered by employers.
Intimidation won’t succeed
Their threats and money are worthless to us. The information we provide workers is based upon interpretation of the labour law offered by professional and trained lawyers. Our views are even supported by the Minister of Labour and the head of the CCMA. In media statements they urge workers to take their case to the CCMA if their labour broker or employer try to dodge the new labour law.
If anything, the emails of Kirchmanns Inc. prove that we are on the right path and should continue as we were. We will keep informing workers with the correct interpretation of the law and assist them in taking their case up with their employers and the CCMA.
We’re not backing down and we won’t be intimidated. Let the struggle continue!
 The Star, 8th of May