• Tell the government to provide adequate information on free safe, legal abortion.
    In 2017 Akhona Matyeni* a matric learner from rural Umthatha, lost her life to an illegal abortion. Akhona bled to death after taking what she knew to be abortion pills, purchased for R200 from an unknown man who's phone number she had found on a poster on the streets of Umthatha. Akhona did not know that she could access a safe, legal abortion for free at a government hospital or clinic she was just desperate to ensure that nothing came between her and obtaining an education. According to the World Health Organization up to 13% of deaths among pregnant women can be attributed to unsafe abortions. Despite the fact that abortion is legal in South Africa, it is estimated that between 52% and 58% of the estimated 260 000 abortions that take place in the country every year are illegal [1]. By South African law a legal abortion can only be performed by a midwife, a registered nurse trained for the procedure, a general practitioner or a gynecologist. Many South African women and girls remain unaware of the law and the services they are entitled to. A 2005 study published in the International Journal of Gynecology & Obstetrics reveals that, in a sample of 50 South African women who had terminated pregnancies illegally/outside of designated facilities. Over 50% admitted they had done so because they "did not know the law". A further 15% said they knew their rights but they did not know where to access safe, legal abortions [2]. Access to safe abortions saves women's lives everyday. A lack of information shouldn't stand in the way of that. In South Africa poor provision of adequate information remains one of the main barriers for women who seek safe, legal abortions. As things stand it is much easier for women to access information on unsafe, illegal abortions than it is to access information on the free safe, legal abortions that our government is constitutionally obligated to provide. In 2017 Amnesty International reported that less than 7% of South Africa's 3 880 public health facilities perform termination of pregnancy. This is a figure that is far less than the 505 medical facilities that the Department of Health claims to have designated to perform termination of pregnancy across South Africa [3]. This indicates that beyond the issue of the lack of available information on safe, legal abortion facilities, there is the issue of the Department of Health itself not having accurate information on the functionality of its own facilities. An investigation into the functionality of existing facilities is imperative for us to ascertain exactly how many facilities are available and what their capacity is. A national online abortion database will ensure that every woman has direct access to information on where and how they can access a free safe, legal abortion. These interventions will save lives by drastically decreasing the number of illegal abortions taking place in our country and putting an end to the desperation that forces women to undergo unsafe, illegal abortions. We call on the public to take a stand and put pressure on our government to make these important interventions in order to save the lives of women who are turning to unsafe, illegal abortions everyday because of a lack of information. We call on you to stand with us as we demand reproductive justice for all! *Not her real name SOURCES [1] SAnews. (2018). SA's illegal abortion rate alarmingly high. [online] Available at: https://www.sanews.gov.za/south-africa/sas-illegal-abortion-rate-alarmingly-high [Accessed 6 Sep. 2018]. [2] Tshangela, L. (2018). Only 40% of public clinics provide abortions: Study - [online] SABC News - Breaking news, special reports, world, business, sport coverage of all South African current events. Africa's news leader. Available at: http://www.sabcnews.com/sabcnews/only-40-of-public-clinics-provide-abortions-study/ [Accessed 5 Sep. 2018]. [3] Dyk, J. (2018). When there was no list of free abortion clinics, we made our own. Here's how.. [online] Bhekisisa. Available at: https://bhekisisa.org/article/2017-11-10-00-mind-the-gap-only-5-of-health-facilities-offer-abortions-heres-how-to-find-them [Accessed 6 Sep. 2018].
    501 of 600 Signatures
    Created by Noxolo Mfocwa
  • Minister of Labour wants to change the law so domestic workers can get compensation - support this
    Domestic workers are denied compensation for injuries because they are excluded from the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act (COIDA). But an amendment to the law has been proposed. But we only have 7 days before public submissions close, and we need to come together in numbers to ensure the law is changed. Maria Mahlangu, a domestic worker drowned in 2012. Her family was offered only R2500 compensation. Johanna Motha was bitten by her employer's dog and set home without medical treatment. She ended up dying as a result of her injuries. These are just two of the countless incidences of injury and illness domestic workers have faced on the job. SADSAWU( South African Domestic Service and Allied Workers Union) brought an application against the Minister of Labour and the Compensation Commissioner for domestic workers to claim compensation in terms of the Compensation for Injuries and Diseases Act 130 of 1993(COIDA), in response to the poor compensation Mahlangu's family was offered. The case has been pending since 2015. The case has recently been postponed, after being set for the 15th of October. This case is an example of the consequences of domestic worker's exclusion in this Act. We call on you to recognize this case, as well as the rights of domestic workers. The reality is that domestic work opens itself up to abuse. This abuse is targeted at Black working class womxn, who work behind closed doors and make up the largest percentage of domestic workers. Issues like health are always linked to racism and classism. Domestic workers are not seen as equals to their employer and are treated with contempt and disrespect. In the past domestic work, was not regulated by government, because they were not part of key labour legislation. Their work, was therefore seen as casual and informal, and little respect was paid to the work they do. This attitude of disregard towards domestic workers, is still seen in the way employers treat domestic workers. We are not paying enough attention to the health of domestic workers. Even though domestic work is included in the Occupational Health and Safety Act, they are still not a part of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act [1]. This means domestic workers cannot seek medical compensation for costs linked to work related injuries and diseases. Domestic workers have to cover their own medical expenses when injured on the job. This is often times impossible- due to the small sum of money they are paid. Domestic workers should be paid R1787.80 a month [2], this is hardly enough to cover basic living expenses and transport to work. A study by Dr. Lindiwe Innocentia Zungu on the health conditions domestic workers experience. The findings were that there are a range of workplace health hazards. These included “chemical hazards due to detergents and other chemicals used for cleaning purposes, and physical hazards from activities involving manual handling and/or repetitive movements, e.g. scrubbing floors, moving furniture, washing and ironing clothes.... Furthermore, psycho-social hazards due to urbanization were also prevalent among participants who resided in their employers’ premises.'' [3] It is clear that domestic work can be dangerous, physically and mentally. This is why it is important that we demand for the Minister of Labour to commit to including domestic workers in the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act. By including domestic workers in this Act, they will have access to health care, when faced with injury or illness acquired on the job. Their inclusion in this Act is also a message of recognition for the important work they do. By getting enough signatures on this petition, together we can demand the Minister of Labour to commit to making domestic work a priority and include them in the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act. [1] “The 2018 minimum wages for nannies and domestic workers.” Nic Anderson. 13 December 2017 for Parent24 [2]“Bill on labour brokers gets green light”Nov 12 2013 Sapa. Fin24 [3]"Employment conditions and challenges associated with being a domestic worker in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. "Dr Lindiwe Innocentia Zungu, Associate Professor, University of Johannesburg, Faculty of Health Sciences.
    1,681 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Clio Koopman
  • Title deeds for the deserving residents of Pennyville flats
    The majority of people living in Pennyville are currently either unemployed or the families are child run or elderly run with most receiving grants. Most of them cannot afford the rentals and therefore in arrears amounting to thousands of rands. Attempts to address this matter with the relevant authorities have been unsuccessful.
    35 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Thabiso Seipobi Picture
  • E-cigarettes are a health risk, help pass new anti-smoking laws
    E-cigarettes put people at risk of lung and heart disease, and may cause cancer. The industry has used legal loopholes to get a new generation addicted. Just as cigarettes were once seen as trendy and cool, the industry has marketed vaping as healthier and cool, which is attracting young people and misleading adults to believe they are a healthy alternative to cigarettes. Research just published shows e-cigarettes are unlikely to help you quit. Smokers who don’t use e-cigarettes are more than twice as likely to quit smoking than those who use e-cigarettes [1] The health insurance industry including Discovery Life, BrightRock, Liberty, Standard Bank Insurance and brokerage Insurance Busters, have stated all customers who have life cover, and who declare that they use e-cigarettes, will be treated the same as cigarette smokers [2]. A WHO report (2016) recommended that e-cigarettes be banned in indoor areas or where smoking is prohibited. This is because of the potential for non-users to be exposed to chemicals and e-cigarette aerosol in indoor areas. This exposure has the potential to harm the health of non-users. The use of e-cigarettes has been linked to an increase in heart rate and high blood pressure, and the nicotine in e-cigarettes can cause a stiffening of the arteries, all of which can cause increased risk to heart health, including increasing the risk of heart attacks. E-cigarette use has also been linked to certain lung diseases such as COPD and cystic fibrosis (UNC School of Medicine, 2017). Researchers at the University of Connecticut found that e-cigarettes loaded with a nicotine-based liquid are potentially as harmful as unfiltered cigarettes when it comes to causing DNA damage (2017). The researchers also found that vapor from non-nicotine e-cigarettes caused as much DNA damage as filtered cigarettes, possibly due to the many chemical additives present in e-cigarette vapors. Cellular mutations caused by DNA damage can lead to cancer. The US Surgeon General’s Report (2016) reported that nicotine exposure during adolescence can cause addiction and can harm the developing adolescent brain. It noted further that nicotine can cross the placenta and has known effects on fetal and postnatal development. Therefore, nicotine delivered by e-cigarettes during pregnancy can result in multiple adverse consequences, including sudden infant death syndrome. [1] https://www.wsj.com/articles/vaping-doesnt-often-help-smokers-quit-new-study-finds-1531159338 [2] Vaping the Jury's out on its long-term use. Angelique Ruzicka. City Press 16 April 2017.
    13 of 100 Signatures
    Created by National Council Against Smoking
  • Seka imithetho yokunciphisa ukubhema, thumela umyalezo wakho
    Noma ngabe awubhemi, uyahlangana nentuthu yogwayi yalabo ababhemayo futhi lokhu kwandisa amathuba okuthola umdlavuza, ama-strokes, izifo zenhliziyo kanye nezesifuba. U-Ike wayengakaze abheme empilweni yakhe, kodwa lo mama wezingane ezimbili waqalwa ngumdlavuza womphimbo. Odokotela bathi imbangela yalokhu kungaba ukuhlangana nentuthu yogwayi. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRQZp2WeGBM Zonke izakhamuzi zaseNingizimu Afrika zinelungelo lokuphefumula umoya ohlanzekile kodwa intuthu yogwayi ilulaza impilo yalabo abangabhemi, ikakhulu abantwana. Ukuhabula intuthu yogwayi kuyawanyusa amathuba okuthula umdlavuza wamaphaphu, i-pneumonia, izifo zesifuba kanye nezenhliziyo [1]. Akukho kuphepha ekuhlanganeni nentuthu yogwayi. Yingakho isiphakamiso soMnyango wezeMpilo iTobacco Control Bill sibalulekile, leBill izovala ukubhema ezindaweni lapho kuhlangana khona abantu kanye nasezimotweni ezinabantwana abangaphansi kweminyaka engu-18. Le Bill iphakamisa imithetho ehlose ukunciphisa ukubhema ngokuthi kusetshenziswe amabhokisi angenamibhalo, kanye nezithombe eziqwashisa ngengozi yokubhema, kanye nokusetshenziswa kwama e-cigarettes [2]. Kodwa imboni yogwayi iyagqugquzela ukuze ivikele imivuzo yayo, futhi ifaka isicelo sokuthi le Bill ithanjiswe. Le mboni ichithe iminyaka iphika ukuthi imikhiqizo yayo ibulala ingxenye yabasebenzisi bemikhiqizo yayo [3], futhi siyazi ukuthi ukubhema kuyimbangela yomdlavuza wamaphaphu, obikwa ku-80% wama-cases [4]. Phezu kwalokho, bangama-116 abantu abafa nsuku zonke eNingizimu Afrika ngenxa yezifo ezihlangene nogwayi [5]. Isikhathi sincane, futhi siyaphela. Ukumukelwa kwemibono yomphakathi ekusekeni le Bill kuyavala ngezi-9 Agasti 2018. Uma iningi lethu lingathumela imibono eveza ukuzimisela kwethu ekubeni nomoya ohlanzekile kanye nokuncishiswa kokubhema, singaqinisekisa ukuthi kunabantu abaningi abaseka leBill ukuze yenziwe umthetho. Ukuze uthole imininingwane eminye, ungavakashela la https://www.againstsmoking.co.za/ Landela umkhankaso wethu i #BeSmokeFree kuTwitter @SAQuitline Okucashuniwe [1] World Health Organization. International Consultation on Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) and Child Health. January 11–14, 1999 [2] http://www.health.gov.za/index.php/2014-03-17-09-09-38/policies-and-guidelines/doc3 [3] http://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/tobacco [4] Quit smoking - save your life. Kerry Cullinan for Health-e News 31 May 2018 [5] The Tobacco Atlas, sixth edition. Jeffrey Drope and Neil Schluger
    84 of 100 Signatures
    Created by National Council Against Smoking
  • Support new anti-smoking laws, send in your submission
    Even if you don’t smoke, you are exposed to secondhand smoke that can put you at risk of developing cancer, strokes, heart disease, bronchitis, pneumonia and asthma. Ike never smoked a day in her life, but this mother of two developed throat cancer, which doctors say was likely caused by secondhand smoke. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRQZp2WeGBM All South Africans should have a right to clean air, but secondhand smoking threatens the health of those who don’t smoke, especially children. Secondhand smoke increases the chances of people developing bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma and heart disease [1]. There is no safe level of secondhand smoke exposure. That’s why the Department of Health’s proposed Tobacco Control Bill is so important, because it will ban smoking in public places and in vehicles with children under the age of 18. The draft bill proposes laws which will help to reduce smoking by introducing plain packaging and graphic health warnings as well as the regulation of e-cigarettes [2]. But the Tobacco Industry is mobilising to protect their profits, and are making submissions to water down the draft Bill. The Tobacco Industry spent decades denying that their product kills up to half of its users [3], but we know that smoking is the leading driver of lung cancer, causing 80% of cases [4]. What is more, 116 people died in South Africa every day from tobacco-related disease [5]. We are running out of time. Public submissions to support government's draft Bill close on the 9th of August 2018. If enough of us send in public submissions sharing why we want clean air and less smoking, and why we support the Bill, we can ensure we have the numbers to pass the draft Bill and make it law. According to the American Lung Association at least 69 chemicals in cigarettes are known to cause cancer and many are poisonous [6]. Chemicals include acetone (used in paint stripper), ammonium (used in toilet cleaner), lead, arsenic (used in rat poison), benzene which is produced by burning cigarettes and is used in pesticides [7] and nicotine (used in insecticide). Earlier this month researchers published a study which contradicts a major claim by the e-cigarette industry. The study found that smokers who did not use e-cigarettes to quit smoking were more than twice as likely to quit, than smokers who use e-cigarettes [8]. For more information visit https://www.againstsmoking.co.za/ Follow our #BeSmokeFree campaign on Twitter @SAQuitline References [1] World Health Organization. International Consultation on Environmental Tobacco Smoke (ETS) and Child Health. January 11–14, 1999 [2] http://www.health.gov.za/index.php/2014-03-17-09-09-38/policies-and-guidelines/doc3 [3] http://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/tobacco [4] Quit smoking - save your life. Kerry Cullinan for Health-e News 31 May 2018 [5] The Tobacco Atlas, sixth edition. Jeffrey Drope and Neil Schluger [6] American Lung Association, Smoking Facts [7] Tobacco Free Life, Carcinogenic Compounds in Cigarette Smoke. [8] https://www.wsj.com/articles/vaping-doesnt-often-help-smokers-quit-new-study-finds-1531159338
    1,062 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by National Council Against Smoking
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Zifuneleni Junior Secondary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Zakheni Primary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Winnie Ngwekazi Primary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Welizibuko Primary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Totomeng Primary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    1 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member
  • Sign to demand healthy food for Tembisa West Secondary School
    Ensuring our children aren't hungry is our first priority as a community, but often the cheapest foods are unhealthy and can lead to health issues in our children, now and in the future, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, joint pain and certain cancers, which can be the result of lack of access to healthy food. We asked your school questions about what food most learners buy for lunch, and most said they buy kotas from vendors with sugary drinks. Learners also bought ice lollies, sweets and ice creams. This is not a balanced diet, and what we eat affects how much we can concentrate, and how sick we will get in the future. We use to have to just worry about HIV/AIDS, TB and other diseases, but now diseases like type 2 diabetes are increasing in our communities. The other reason we are getting sicker is because greedy junk food companies are aggressively marketing their products in our schools. But we can change this, if enough of us come together, we can ensure our voices are heard by the the MECs of Education and Health. If you don’t have email, you can join the campaign for free by dialing this code on your phone *134*1994*456#
    2 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Amandla.mobi Member