Hospital Workers Lead Struggle Against Privatisation
Written by: Ned K. on 5 December 2021
Hospital workers in SA have been waging a determined struggle against privatisation of services in the SA public health system.
In the last week of November about 400 support services workers from Flinders Medical Centre, Noarlunga Hospital and the Repatriation General Hospital went on a half day strike. These workers comprise one of the last groups of support services workers not yet privatised.
The workers held a rousing demonstration outside the main entrance of the hospital and received strong support from patients, members of the public and other hospital workers.
The strike is part of escalating actions by workers across the public health sector to prevent further privatisation and to preserve wage parity for workers already privatised and employed by multinational contractors.
Their struggle to defend and extend the public health system is also a part of the struggle for an independent public health system free from the clutches of multinational corporations. In SA large parts of the public health system have been privatised and handed to multinational companies Spotless (part of the Downer group) and ISS, the biggest facility services corporations in Europe and one of the largest in the world.
All the workers at the demonstration wore masks in recognition that they are also fighting an invisible enemy, Covid 19 in all its forms. The workers know that their struggle for job security and against privatisation and their struggle against Covid 19 as workers and citizens are linked.
Further privatisation means that more workers and patients will be exposed to short cuts for profits leading to greater risk of spread of the virus.
Their resilience over the last two years shows they are in it for the long haul and they will win!
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