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30 July 2018

Hospersa supports the protest action against Gender Based Violence (GBV) on 1 August 2018 under the banner #TotalShutdown.  The Union has also called for specialised services for GBV as well as a tougher stance against perpetrators found guilty.

Over the last two months, women and gender non-conforming individuals have been engaging in mobilising efforts for 1 August 2018 march.  The march will see many women take to the streets across the country under the banner of #TotalShutdown: Intersection Woman’s March Against Gender-Based Violence.  Hospersa has thrown its weight behind the protest action and is calling for specialised services for GBV.  The Union calls for the following:

1.     A National Indaba on GBV where relevant role players can start the process to address a GBV Country plan.

2.     The development of a National Gender Based Violence Plan.  The plan must be similar to the National Strategic Plan for HIV/TB/STI’s (NSP) 2017/2022.  This plan should be multi-sectoral with adequate human and financial resources.

3.     Ensure that all health facilities have a dedicated and specialised service available for victims of gender based violence and sexual assault.

4.     Additional specialised staff to be trained and employed within the health sector as Gender Based Violence specialists.

5.     Training and implementation on the current Department of Health, Sexual Assault Guideline 2005.

6.     A Gender Based Violence screening tool for health care workers to implement as this will assist in the proactive prevention of serious Gender Based Violence incidence.

7.     Debriefing for health care workers who are working with victims of GBV and sexual assault.

8.     A national campaign specifically speaking to the health system’s role in a GBV service.

 “It is crucial for the health sector to provide a specialised, comprehensive, compassionate and proactive service to victims of violence, especially in a country like ours where violent crimes are rampant,” said Hospersa Gender spokesperson, Fazeela Fayers.  “Victims of GBV and sexual assault need to be received by well trained health care workers who understand their biological and psycho-social needs in order to provide the relevant comfort, advice and appropriate medical treatment.  A national action plan will address the gaps that currently exist in the health system,” added Fayers.

The movement has managed to organise more than 100 000 women and gender non-conforming individuals to form part of the mass action.  Femicide and GBV statistics continue to rise in this country, and a comprehensive plan is urgently needed.

“As a trade union with many female members, Hospersa supports this mass action against GBV.  We encourage our members that will be off duty to support this mass action in the various provinces.  We also call on all South Africans and civil society organisations to unite in the fight against gender-based violence by taking part in this mass action,” concluded Fayers.



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 For more information please contact Hospersa Gender spokesperson Fazeela Fayers on 082-654-1368.

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