Johannesburg Pikitup workers unhappy with biometric workforce management

Categories Biometrics News

There has been plenty of confusion this morning regarding South-African waste management company Pikitup and whether its workers in Johannesburg have gone on strike regarding the implementation of a biometric workforce management system as well as breathalyser tests for drivers and transport workers.

It was first reported that Pikitup workers were to start striking this morning in reaction to new the new mandates and workforce management system, though the union – The South African Municipal Workers Union (SAMWU) — has since said that its workers were only holding a meeting, not performing job action.

In an official statement this morning, Pikitup told residents and business owners to hold back garbage bins until further notice.

This news comes as the South African Department of Basic Education is facing similar resistance to a proposed biometric workforce management system in the country’s schools. As we reported previously, thousands of teachers and the South African Democratic Teachers’ Union took to the streets to protest the move and impose a work-to-rule strike, as the union views the technology as a management tool.

As these systems are increasingly deployed, there has also been growing resistance from the side labor.

Teachers in government schools in India’s Andhra Pradesh threatened to strike against a proposed biometric workforce management system.  Also in India, faculty at Vinoba Bhave University have rejected similar plans and have vowed to oppose the new system. 

According to SAMWU, Pikitup workers are not happy with the biometric workforce management system as the feel there was little consultation about its implementation. The union says it also hopes to meet with management to find resolve and address worker concerns in the coming weeks.

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