• Remove racist and defamatory books
    The information, particularly about Coloured people in South Africa is defamatory and racist. The information is ill informed and dangerous in creating assumptions about millions of South Africans. The publisher Paula Marais has taken no responsibility for the chapter by saying other people wrote it and it was verified by people of "that" culture, further exposing her attitude towards accountability.
    2,081 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by Jacqlyne Titus
  • #JUSTICEFORVUYI - SAY NO TO BAIL for Femicide Accused
    On 2 January 2017, a strong, beautiful and tenacious young woman, with a heart made only of gold, was taken from us. A bright light in the lives of all who knew her, this loving mother of three children, was brutally assaulted and killed by her husband in Westlake, Cape Town. This mother of three was allegedly stabbed in full view of the community by her husband and residents claim he had been abusive towards her. South Africa has a femicide rate five times higher than the global average. “Research proves that the chances of a woman being murdered by someone that she knows or is in an intimate relationship with are much higher than any other type of murder… Motives are often financial, adultery or a love-triangle, custody or a residential battle for children.” – Anni Hesselink. In the words of community leader Vusumzi Nelani “This is a very sad case. This is what happens to many women and if the court is lenient this abuse will continue so we want the court to take this case very serious.” (News24, 26/07/2017) Please take a few minutes to sign today if you can. There are witnesses and three vulnerable young children we need to protect!! If we want our voices against domestic violence to count, we need them to count in court too!! Please share this link for friends, family and colleagues to sign. Thank you very much.
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    Created by Nicole Elliott
  • Tell Treasury to increase the national budget for mental health
    What we all want for ourselves and our families is to live our lives in good mental health, and to know that when we need help, we can get it. But in South Africa today we see signs that our public mental health system is heading toward crisis. The lack of Government funding means those most in need are experiencing long waiting times for support; staff are increasingly forced to rely on the use of isolation as a form of care; and the country is experiencing alarmingly high levels of suicide. With the recent deaths of more than 94 people because government had to cut down on their spending and divert monies to other areas. These deaths which could have been prevented, have shown us that more needs to be spent to ensure the well-being of our mental patients. Developing countries have unique challenges which include people experiencing trauma, injury, violence as well as the burden of infectious diseases, harsh economic circumstances and poor living conditions [1]. South Africa is no exception given decades of institutionalized violence and oppression for the majority of its citizens. But mental health care takes the backseat when it comes to the allocation of resources. South Africa has a history of being unkind to its vulnerable populations, especially those who have mental disorders. “Mental health care is underfunded and under-resourced. There are are not enough trained mental health professionals. In 2010, South Africa had 1.58 psycho-social providers for every 100,000 people. In the same period, Argentina had 13.19 psycho-social providers for every 100,000 people. The World Health Organisation recommends that South Africa increase its psycho-social professionals by 2937. [1]” The country has relied heavily on psychiatric hospitals to care for and manage mentally ill patients. This is problematic because public sector mental health care services are not accessible to the country’s most vulnerable populations. The hospitals also don’t have enough trained mental health professionals. With the 2017 budget speech coming up, we can use the moment to rally support for an increase in government expenditure for mental health. The National Treasury working together with the Ministry of Finance must make more funds available for mental health care. The deaths of the Life Esidimeni patients should prompt the government into immediate action.
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    Created by amandla. mobi member
  • Open NSFAS for rejected and pending students
    Furthermore, when one makes an application for NSFAS one is required to issue payment records of all the people in one's household, and the dependents of those people. This is to help NSFAS detect your finances for the month yet they don't consider the monthly cost of a single person, ultimately rejecting the funding application. The Minister of Basic Education announced that the 2016 matric class was the largest in many years. Some students applying for NSFAS have come forward saying that they have not received responses at all. What does this mean? And will students who are rejected receive communication informing them of such? Education is important, & fees are high. We all deserver quality education #EducationForAll
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    Created by Kamogelo Maja
  • MECs of Education across SA: Provide free pads for underprivileged school girls
    According to research, millions of girls, mostly underprivileged in rural and township areas, lose out on school days as a result of having to stay home during their monthly period, for fear of being humiliated by not having proper sanitary protection. Added to this is the cost of buying pads, which many of us take for granted, but is for many, just too expensive. It also affects the reproductive health of these girls as some go extremes such as using newspaper and even cow dung. This is simply something we cannot overlook, menstruation is a natural process no girl can help and should not be a reason they do not attend school and fall behind on their studies.
    82 of 100 Signatures
    Created by Lungelo Shezi
  • Change of street name: Hendrik Verwoerd Drive in Centurion
    An architect of apartheid should not be honoured as the long term effects of the Verwoerd administration are still being dealt with, and the country is still healing from the evil acts of this man. The name triggers bad memories, of suffering and loss. We cannot change history, but we can make South Africa a better place to live in.
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    Created by Azeeza Rangunwala
  • #BringBackTheWorkers 300+ Black Workers Fired at UWC and Stellenbosch
    150 Stellenbosch University workers were dismissed at the end 2015 after demonstrations at that university calling for the insourcing of all workers under the #EndOutSourcing banner. 88 of the 150 dismissed workers were contracted by G4S Secure Solutions. Most of the dismissed workers had been involved in landscaping and as private security staff. Following that the university placed a moratorium on outsourcing. During the Stellenbosch shack demonstrations, in an attempt to justify its inaction in resolving the matter, the university cited that it was not within its legal parameters to intervene in the matter as it was an issue between the outsourcing company and the workers, this is despite the fact that these workers contributed to the daily running of the university and logically it would be in the best interests of the university to resolve the matter amicably, this is truly astounding logic for a university that prides itself in academic excellence yet fails to exercise even the most basic intellecual exercise of logical thinking, but to expect logic and sense from the bastion of Afrikaner Nationalism would be to burden ourselves with false hope! In addition to the dismissal of the Stellenbosch Workers, 188 UWC outsourced workers contracted to the security services company, Securitas, have been dismissed. Since students of UWC waged the fight for free decolonized education and an end to outsourcing, service providers and University Managements have sought to suppress the movement by taking protesting workers to Labour courts with allegations of absconding from work. Initially, the workers had successfully won the case. Their legal team presented the undisputed truth that workers did not abscond from work but in fact stayed away because the campus was on shutdown due to reason being that the UWC refused to engage students in an honest and genuine manner. Securitas, the service provider, soon after the Court ruling embarked on a bias and illegal internal hearing chaired by a person(s) favourable to them. In this bogus hearing, charges were mischievously replaced from the originally defeated in court claims which alleged absconding to manufactured charges now of hostage. On Friday of the 13th January 2017 over 180 workers were found guilty of this false charge and were immediately dismissed. Most of the workers dismissed are bread winners to largely poor families. They have children to feed, buy uniform and schools stationary. This dismissal means that our black parents might see their children being expelled from schools due to being unable to afford registration fees. The University of the Western Cape under the leadership of Tyrone is anti-black and they have declared a war against all the black bodies which do not subscribe to their mediocre and dictatorship leading style which advances capitalist agenda. The Fees Must Fall Western Cape movement stands firm against all forms of victimisation and extends its warning to the University of the Western and the University of Stellenbosch that failure to re-instate unfairly dismissed workers will result in aggravated protests that will hinder the full functioning of both Universities. It simply cannot be that over 300 black families are displaced outside of the economy by frivolous and maliciously applied labour laws by University bureacrats in tandem with private companies. We therefore call upon all those who stand in solidarity with the student-worker aliance to put their signature in support of the reinstatement of our parents. 'We are all connected. When one arm or foot is poisoned, the whole body becomes infected.' -Suzy Kassem #BringBackTheWorkers
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    Created by Fees Must Fall WC Picture
  • Release the Life Esidimeni Report
    The Health Ombudsman has granted the MEC for Health Qedani Mahlangu time to consult with her legal team [1] and have ignored the pain of the families who have lost their loved ones. By this decision, he has prolonged the mourning, the pain of losing a loved one and closure for these families. Family members have voiced out their disappointment and dissatisfaction at this decision [2]. It is unjust and any procedures that allow for this to happen are equally unjust and must be questioned. [1] http://ewn.co.za/2017/01/16/esidimeni-report-into-psychiatrist-patients-death-looms [2] http://ewn.co.za/2017/01/17/relatives-disappointed-over-esidimeni-interim-report-delay
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    Created by amandla. mobi member
  • Hon. Minister Masutha EXTEND the deadline on the Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill
    Just recently, the body of 22-year-old LGBTQ activist Noluvo Swelindawo was found near the N2 highway in Driftsands, a community near Khayelitsha. She had been shot in an alleged hate crime. It is in this light this, and many other cases of ongoing hate crimes against the LGBTI community that we welcome Cabinet’s approval to publish the Prevention and Combating of Hate Crimes and Hate Speech Bill for public comment. The Bill tackles a number of highly complex issues that require consultation with those most affected by the changes - if it is to achieve its stated aims to prevent and combat deaths like Noluvo's - and a proper consultation process takes time. We have waited for many years for the public release of the bill, and it is of utmost importance that the public consultation period allows civil society and the public in general to thoroughly and meaningfully engage with the bill and its potentially far-reaching provisions. After it has taken government nearly four years to draft the Bill, it is alarming that the public has been given a mere five weeks (until 1 December 2016) with a short extension over the holiday season (to 31 January 2017) to comment thereon. If the purpose is to craft an effective bill, the state needs to commit to coordinate robust public engagement and undertake in a process of deep reflection to ensure that the bill that is passed is the best bill possible. The current timeline does allow us to attempt to reach this ideal. As such, we are calling on the Department of Justice (DoJ) to extend the deadline for public comment to the 30 June 2017. We further request clear and detailed information on DoJ’s plan for convening extensive public consultations with representatives from civil society, non-governmental and community-based organisations and interested individuals on the draft bill.
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    Created by Iranti-org and Forum for the Empowerment of Women
  • Tell Parliament to support the tax on sugary drinks
    Sugary drinks are one of the most significant contributors to health problems such as diabetes, obesity, heart diseases, certain cancers and dental decay in the world and in South Africa. Last year, the Minister of Finance announced a plan to tax sugary drinks such as soft drinks, energy drinks, fruit drinks and sweetened milks by April 2017. (Pure fruit juice and milk will be excluded from the tax.) The Parliamentary committees discussing this issue are under pressure to drop this proposal, lower the tax rate, and exempt more products. Beverage companies and retail groups are flooding Parliament with comments to prevent this policy, urging exemptions and weaker regulation. That’s why Parliament needs to hear from YOU to make sure the final policy is strong and effective in lowering the consumption of harmful sugars in beverages. South Africa is already ranked the most obese country in sub-Saharan Africa. Excess sugar consumption is a major cause of obesity and its related diseases, as excessive sugar intake causes increased risk of diabetes, liver and kidney damage, heart disease, some cancers and dental caries. The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Cancer Research Fund recommend that people should consume no more than 10% of total calories from sugar. Sugary drink consumption is also linked to under-nutrition. In many African countries, including South Africa, babies are given sugary drinks as a weaning food or even as a substitute for infant formula, which increases under-nutrition and stunting. Stunted infants have a much greater risk of becoming obese and diabetic.
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    Created by Concerned citizens Picture
  • The national art gallery must respect women's lives
    The art exhibition Our Lady, currently on show at the Iziko South African National Gallery in Cape Town (and intended to be shown until June 2017) was conceived, according to the gallery, to “interrupt the typical traditional moral attitudes and male dominated stereotypes that surrounds imagery of the female form”. It contained works from the gallery’s public collection and also from the private collection of The New Church Museum. However, as soon as the exhibition opened it was met with outrage. Despite three (white) women having co-curated Our Lady, it is impossible to overlook the fact that 75% of the artists on show are men (the majority of which represent women through the staid conventional lens of patriarchy and are dead white men). South Africa has no shortage of artists who critically reflect on gender in their practice. Instead, the perspectives of women, trans and non-binary artists are heinously under-represented. Of the 27 artists on show, a mere seven are women. Considerably more shocking is the fact that only three black women were represented. Given the history and present of our country, we cannot accept how disastrously short the exhibition falls, particularly in terms of creating space for artistic statements from a wider and richer range of identities that reflects the lived reality of South Africa. Furthermore, many are outraged by the curators’ decision to include the work of Zwelethu Mthethwa, who is currently being tried for the violent murder of Nokuphila Kumalo. Though he will remain innocent until proven guilty, the worth and memory of Ms Kumalo are brutally undermined by the curators’ decision to showcase a work by her alleged murderer. Adding insult, the chosen work by Mthethwa is a portrait of a black woman, who the artist chooses to treat as anonymous. The inclusion of a photograph of an unnamed black woman by Mthethwa reiterates a dominant tendency in our culture; that is, the propensity to view the most precarious in our society – including black sex workers such as Ms Kumalo – as faceless, nameless and disposable nonentities. It tacitly participates in the broader erasure of the voices of black women from our national narrative – and in our national gallery at that. The impassive attitude that this exhibition expresses towards Ms Kumalo (as well as towards those who loved her and continue to mourn her), mirrors the tragically low esteem in which black women have been – and continue to be – held in South Africa today. For all of these reasons, we stand in solidarity with SWEAT – the Sex Worker Education and Advocacy Taskforce – who have strongly condemned the gallery for its decision to include Mthethwa’s artwork. As Ishtar Lakhani of SWEAT has said, “The irony of promoting the work of a man accused of murdering a woman as part of an exhibition aimed at empowering women, is not wasted on us.” Just ahead of a public meeting about these issues The New Church Museum withdrew all of its work from the show, without offering an explanation. We believe that the public has a right to understand why a private collection has elected to silently withdraw a series of loaned works that had been committed to an exhibition in a national institution until June 2017. Public institutions should not be playgrounds for private interests. Many strong voices resonated during the intense public meeting that was hosted at the gallery on 15 December 2016. In addition to public statements made by representatives of the gallery and the New Church Museum, an open letter that was signed by all of the (living) women artists represented on Our Lady was read aloud. This collective letter demanded that all works made by its signatories be immediately withdrawn from Our Lady, as a gesture of protest against the exhibition. We were heartened by the hasty response of the National Gallery, in the form of a media statement that acknowledges that it is crucial for public institutions to remain flexible and responsive to their constituencies. The statement articulates the National Gallery’s commitment to continuing the important conversation around Our Lady, and its sincere intention to reconfigure the exhibition in the early days of January 2017. We embrace this positive momentum and continue to believe that it is possible to radically transform Our Lady to address the rampant violence that is directed against women and others who are marginalised in our culture can be compellingly communicated. However, the gallery has not clearly indicated in the exhibition space why there are so many white walls missing work and why there has been a public outcry around the show’s curation and the inclusion of work by Mthethwa. A powerful debate languishes at the skirts of Our Lady. Due to the current state of the exhibition, this debate remains inaccessible to most museum visitors. As the National Gallery decides on the curatorial steps that it will take in order to render the ongoing debate accessible to the broader public, we ask the institution to make bold decisions that will allow the voices of the protesting artists and activists to resonate accessibly and meaningfully in the public space that the exhibition occupies. We view the Iziko South African National Gallery as an ally and a partner, but also as an institution that is charged with the weighty responsibility of attending to and redressing the radical social inequity that continues to characterise South African society. In memory of Nokuphila Kumalo, for women artists, and for all women who have been and continue to be nonchalantly erased from taking a rightful seat at the table, we ask the National Gallery to move swiftly to radically reconfigure Our Lady so as to bring the ongoing debate that it has unleashed to voice.
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    Created by In Memory of Nokuphila Kumalo In Memory of Nokuphila Kumalo
  • Declare OR TAMBO hailstorm affected areas as distaster areas
    On Monday the 2nd of January 2017, a number of areas including the Qweqwe, Payne, Zimbane, Maqhinebeni, VIdgiesville, Mqanduli and the surrounding areas were hit by a severe hailstorm which left many desitute and homeless [1]. Homes, schools and churches were severely damaged and a number of people were rushed to hospital with injuries. During this time of the year this kind of weather uis expected and it is deeply worrying that everytime our Municipality is caught off guard with no contingency plan. We know that it is norm for Disaster Management to delay responding to these disasters even though they have a set budget for such. This is evident even in this case, there has not been any statement issued to declare or any information to give guidance to the affected communities like a toll free number or contact offices/persons We however, commend the Department of Health for being visible and issuing a media statement going as far as offering assistance to those injured. [1] Lightining strikes Seven people in Mthatha, Jenni Evans, News24
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    Created by Fungiwe Ntleki