• We need unhealthy food warning labels so we know which foods threaten our health
    Shops across South Africa are filled with pre-packaged foods that are processed with high levels of added sugars, salt, and saturated fats. A diet high in sugar, sodium or saturated fat can increase the risk of developing life threatening diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and some cancers. Easy to read food front-of-package warning labels can help consumers quickly, easily, and correctly identify foods high in nutrients of concern, such as excess salt, fat and sugar. The good news is the Department of Health is considering warning labels, and could start the process of implementing them by opening public comment. But already big food companies are trying to lobby against these warning labels [1]. But if enough of us come together, we can help ensure the department puts our health first, not corporate profits. We believe that we, not the food and drinks industry, have the right to decide what we are willing to put in our bodies. The people of South African deserve to know what is in our food. References: [1] https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2022-05-30-heres-why-you-should-care-about-the-food-industry-lobbying-the-health-department-behind-closed-doors/
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  • Angie Motshekga must expand + extend contracts for The Presidential Youth Employment Initiative
    This contract extension will help thousands of youth and their families struggling as it is to make ends meet. Some employees have started going to school and pursuing Education due to the opportunity that was given by the Basic Education programme. Some families depend on us, and some of us have children. This programme has made a massive difference in our lives. Please extend our contracts Mama Angie. Youth unemployment rate in South Africa has increased to 64.4% in the second quarter of 2021 from 63.3% in the first quarter of 2021 [1]. [1] South Africa Youth Unemployment Rate: https://tradingeconomics.com/south-africa/youth-unemployment-rate
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  • We call on the MJC to not isolate and discriminate against Queer Muslims
    We strive to create Muslim spaces in South Africa that are safe, affirming and supporting to LGBTQ Muslims. We exist, we strive to achieve our full freedom and live with our dignity intact. As Muslims who believe in the oneness, the Beneficent and Merciful. All people deserve to enjoy a life free from oppression and discrimination. Together we can dismantle oppressive institutions and build safe, affirming and kind spaces for LGBTQIA+ Muslims and all persons. [1] https://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/muslim-judicial-council-issues-short-fatwa-against-gays-70bdab57-583c-4978-9ca8-891cc0bc9476
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  • Fix R350 grant problems now Mr President
    The R350 SRD grant was mainly introduced to provide relief to the unemployed during the first lockdown in 2020 when the Covid-19 pandemic hit. The need for the grant further highlighted the urgent need for the long-overdue BIG which was recommended by the Taylor Committee Report nearly 20 years ago [3]. Unless the problems of the grant are urgently attended to and fixed, they will continue to hinder the progress of implementing the BIG by April 2023. President Cyril Ramaphosa must honour his commitment to leave no one behind and ensure that Treasury, DSD and Sassa work together to fix all R350 issues before it ends in March 2023 and then have it turned into the much-needed Basic Income Grant. [1] https://www.gov.za/speeches/president-cyril-ramaphosa-2022-state-nation-address-10-feb-2022-0000 [2] https://www.groundup.org.za/article/seven-million-people-have-applied-for-r350-grant-since-saturday/ [3] https://ewn.co.za/2022/02/09/a-basic-income-grant-the-nitty-gritty-and-feasibility-of-this-proposed-idea
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  • WE DEMAND THE CITY OF CAPE TOWN WITHDRAW THE UNCONSTITUTIONAL UNLAWFUL OCCUPATION BY-LAW
    The unlawful occupation by-law, gazetted on the 14th of February 2022 undermines the constitution and circumvents the PIE ACT. This by-law deviates from the Human Settlements Strategy which provides that the City should “proactively plan for informality.” The Unlawful Occupation By-law contradicts this aim, it seeks to criminalise poor and working-class people who have fallen through the cracks of the city’s housing waiting list. The City’s by-law on unlawful land occupation seeks to bypass the protections of PIE. It also provides the so-called “City officials” with large amounts of arbitrary and discretionary power over poor and working-class people.
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  • Have Your Say: Tell DSD to withdraw the Draft NPO Amendment Bill!
    The proposed changes are not-fit-for-purpose. If implemented in its current form, it will create more onerous rules for NPOs and fail to improve the capacity of DSD to fulfil its mandate. Such compliance changes on NPOs could result in deregistration or undue delays for organisations, mainly if they provide services to the state. The current administrative delays already create significant challenges, and the new Bill may worsen, rather than reduce, these. The Department’s NPO Directorate reiterated that it was important that the sector at large submit comments on the Bill. Public comments will shape and change the Bill - this is why your signature is needed. Key areas of concern: 1. A poorly drafted Bill: The Bill is poorly drafted, open to interpretation and lacks precise alignment between DSD’s stated intentions and the actual amendments. 2. The NPO directorate name changed, to a Registrar. There is a lack of clarity about whether that Registrar will be independent and move out of the DSD; concerns about capacity and resources remain. 3. Accountability of the NPO sector: There is a lack knowledge about and implementation of good governance at many NPOs. A new structure for boards has been proposed, which includes deputies. The sector agrees that governance is an issue, and there is a need for self-regulation, but not in the way it has been formulated in the Bill. 4. Cleaning up the NPO database: At present many NPOs are registered with identical names. There is also a campaign to deregister those NPOs which do not meet legislative requirements. However, there are concerns that the DSD lacks the capacity to address the database issues and the form this will take in terms of the Bill proposals. 5. Registration of international NPOs. The DSD has shared that this provision has been included in the Bill because of information received from a government investigative team that some NPOs could be caught up in money laundering and finance for terrorist activities. While there is agreement on the need to counter corruption and terrorism, there are concerns the sector will be over-regulated with draconian controls. Sign and Comment on our letter of Request to the Department of Social Development Parliamentary Portfolio Committee and the Non-Profit Directorate to recall the Non-Profit Amendment Bill (originally 31 October 2021, now 10 June 2022) and write your letter to Chief Director: NPO Information and Registration Management, Mpho Mngxitama email: [email protected] For further reading For more details on these communiques, see https://www.inyathelo.org.za/important-information.html Communiqué 1: 28 October 2021 Inyathelo webinar convened on 21October 2021 on the DSD’s call for comments on the Non-Profit Amendment Bill 2021. Communiqué 2: 3 November 2021 The Working Group on the Nonprofit Organisation Amendment Bill (WG-NOAB) submitted a letter requesting an extension to the deadline for comments on the NPO Amendment Bill, along with preliminary comments on the Bill to the Acting Director-General, Mr Mchunu, on 31 October 2021. Communiqué 3: 9 November 2021 Further communication with the DSD. Agenda received for a meeting scheduled for 10 November 2021. Communiqué 4: 16 November 2021 Comments and resolutions from the meeting of 10 November 2021, called by the DSD to address the concerns raised by the Working Group regarding the NPO Amendment Bill and a request for a deadline for comments by civil society organisations. Communiqué 5: 3 March 2022 On 27 January 2022, the Working Group emailed Chief Director: NPO Information and Registration Management, Mpho Mngxitama, to query the outcome of the Cabinet’s decision on the request for an extension to the date for submissions on the NPO Amendment Bill. Communiqué 6: 11 March 2022 Virtual meeting with the NPO sector on 10 March 2022 with feedback on the NPO Act Amendment process. Communiqué 7: 23 March 2022 Subsequent to the last communication wherein nominations were requested to attend the meeting proposed by DSD and planned for 23 March 2022, the DSD advised that this meeting would only be convened virtually. Communiqué 8: 25 March 2022 The NPO representative Working Group and nominees from the NPO sector participated in a virtual meeting organised by the DSD on 23 March to discuss the NPO Amendment Bill. Although the original intention of the meeting was a workshop format, the DSD conducted the meeting as a structured presentation with question-and-answer slots at the end of each presentation. Communiqué 9: 06 April 2022 It was advised that the NPO Working Group would host a workshop on 13 April, that would help the NPO sector make submissions on the NPO Act Amendment Bill, 2021. The Working Group would also present its views on the next steps.
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  • Minister Motshekga, keep South African schools as alcohol-free zones!!
    This is an issue that affects everyone in our society - learners, educators, school admin staff, and anyone who has, or will have, a child in the school system. There is a saying that 'it takes a village to raise a child'. Well, it takes a caring society to protect its children from exposure to the risk of harm. Alcohol use is already a major problem in our country. Schools in some communities already face the challenge of having large numbers of liquor outlets around them and very close to them. Some already have problems with alcohol being used on their premises. Making it possible for schools to have liquor for the purpose of fund-raising simply increases the risks for all of those at schools - learners, educators, admin staff, and even family members who interact with the school. If schools have a problem raising funds, government and society must work with them to address it in other ways - allowing schools to raise money through liquor is not the answer. We should be better than that as a society, as South Africans. We call on you to join us in urging the government to scrap the sections in the BELA Bill which will allow liquor on school premises and at school events. Support the call for a complete ban on liquor on school premises (except for personal use by staff who live on school property). Demand better funding models for our schools so that all children have access to quality education in a safe and protected environment. Fly a blue ribbon at your school in support of the campaign; wear blue ribbons as a group as you participate in school activities. Write to the Minister at [email protected] to tell her what you think of the alcohol clauses in the BELA Bill. Write to the Portfolio Committee in Parliament by 15 June to register your opposition to the alcohol clauses in the Bill - Mr Llewellyn Brown, the Committee Secretary via email: [email protected] or online at https://forms.gle/MoC6AdbdQyYPk3Y49 or via WhatsApp: +27 60 550 9848. Mr Llewellyn Brown can be reached on 083 709 8450 for enquiries. Download the BELA Bill from https://www.parliament.gov.za/storage/app/media/Bills/2022/B2_2022_Basic_Education_Laws_Amendment_Bill/B2_2022_Basic_Education_Laws_Amendment_Bill.pdf Together we can win this one!
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  • Minister Patel - reject the EU & US ‘bad deal’ - this deal does not save lives!
    After 17.5 months of dragging their feet, negotiations are currently underway to reach a quick ‘deal’ at the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on the TRIPS WAIVER proposal - boldly led by South Africa and India since October 2020. MInister Patel is in charge of the negotiations for South Africa. The leaked text of the proposed ‘deal’ shows they are not negotiating a waiver, as originally requested, but rather, conditions and clarifications, which after this much time and deaths, represents a poor compromise. It will be a shame if Minister Patel supports the bad deal contained in the leaked text. He should not. The leaked text represents the interests of the EU and the US and other vested interests. It is a very bad ‘deal’ that does almost nothing to advance the demand for equitable access to vaccines (and other health products) for the majority of the world’s population - and yet the poorest and most marginalised everywhere have suffered the worst effects of the pandemic. The South African Government should REJECT this deal which is related to the ongoing TRIPS Waiver negotiations for fairer access to COVID-19 technologies for everyone, everywhere. We call on organisations and individuals in South Africa to sign onto an ‘Open Letter’ to Minister Patel and the South African Government. You can read and sign the letter here: https://forms.gle/GTT9kmf9nECFfSF86 For more information on the leaked text and reactions to it, please see: https://healthjusticeinitiative.org.za/2022/03/24/trips-waiver-negotiations-leaked-text/
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  • Angie Motshekga must extend contracts for The Presidential Youth Employment Initiative to DEC 2022
    This contract extension will help thousands of youth and their families struggling as it is to make ends meet. Some employees have started going to school and pursuing Education due to the opportunity that was given by the Basic Education programme. Some families depend on us, and some of us have children. This programme has made a massive difference in our lives. Please extend our contracts Mama Angie. Youth unemployment rate in South Africa has increased to 64.4% in the second quarter of 2021 from 63.3% in the first quarter of 2021 [2]. [1] DBE embarks on the monitoring of the Presidential Youth Employment Initiative:https://www.education.gov.za/PYEIMonitoring1121.aspx [2] South Africa Youth Unemployment Rate: https://tradingeconomics.com/south-africa/youth-unemployment-rate
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  • Stand with farm women who demand a wealth tax
    If there was ever a time in South Africa’s history to impose a wealth tax, it is now. Here’s why: 1. In 2021 the South African Revenue Service appointed the first Director of the High Wealth Individuals Unit, tasked with improving the tax compliance of wealthy individuals and assessing the feasibility of a wealth tax. There is also existing research showing the viability of a wealth tax [1] Argentina successfully implemented a once-off wealth tax generating $2.4 billion in 2021 for COVID-19 relief [2]. 2. Internationally, a group of millionaires and billionaires - Patriotic Millionaires, Millionaires for Humanity and Tax me Now - have called for a permanent wealth tax on the richest citizens in every country (2022) [3]. The world is moving in this direction. Sign the petition to help secure a wealth tax in South Africa NOW! https://youtu.be/9UNUchUQUbo [1] A wealth tax for South Africa, Aroop Chatterjee, Leo Czajka and Amory Gethin for Wits University, January 2021. [2] Critics say a wealth tax wouldn't work. Argentina just brought in $2.4 billion with one, Juliana Kaplan for Business Insider, 4 May 2021 [3] 102 millionaires, including Abigail Disney, have signed another letter asking governments around the world to raise their taxes, Huileng Tan for Business Insider, 19 January 2021.
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  • Pay The ECD Relief Funds Now!
    The delays in payment have resulted in hundreds of ECD centres buckling under the strain of Covid-19 and closing down as they cannot afford rent, electricity, nutrition for the children in their care, or staff salaries. Many staff members have had little to no income for almost two years, since the initial nation-wide lockdown in March 2020, and are struggling to put food on their tables and pay for basic needs – they truly require emergency relief funding.
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  • Help stop convicted woman abuser Koffi Olomide concert in Nairobi, Kenya
    Koffi Olomide has a documented history of violence directed at women. In March 2019 he was convicted of statutory rape in France and between 2002 and 2006, sexually assaulted his dancers [2]. In July 2016, he was deported from Kenya for assaulting one of his dancers [3]. Allowing him to perform in Kenya right after the 16 Days of Activism to End Violence Against Women and Girls global campaign, right after Human Rights Day, and right before Jamhuri Day would undermine the victims of his actions and derail all the progress our country has made in the fight against GBV. Neither of these scenarios must be allowed nor tolerated, as Kenya already has a GBV crisis and must not reward perpetrators with platforms such as this. It is all our moral responsibility to ensure Kenya does not become a magnet for foreign criminal elements, especially those that violate the human rights of women and girls. [1] https://www.kenya24news.com/lifestyle/koffi-olomide-set-for-nairobi-concert/203042-news [2] https://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-47615273 [3] https://africa.cgtn.com/2016/07/23/koffi-olomide-deported-by-kenya-after-he-assaulted-one-of-his-dancers/
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