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  • Domestic work in South Africa, one year after Constitutional Court victory  (18 November 2021). Friday, 19 November 2021 will mark the first anniversary since the Constitutional Court handed down a monumental judgment in Mahlangu v Minister of Labour compelling the inclusion of domestic workers in legislation aimed at protecting workers. On Wednesday, 24 November 2021, SERI and the Nelson Mandela Foundation will host an anniversary event reflecting on the status of domestic work in South Africa since the Constitutional Court judgment. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Constitutional Court confirms Mashaba’s inner city raids unconstitutional (25 October 2021). On Friday 22 October 2021, the Constitutional Court confirmed an earlier judgment by the Johannesburg High Court declaring section 13(7)(c) of the South African Police Services Act 68 of 1995 (the SAPS Act) constitutionally invalid insofar as it allows for warrantless searches. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI stands by claims for damages made by the deceased miners' families against the state (19 August 2021). On 17 August 2021, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development’s Solicitor General Fhedzisani Pandelani provided an update on the reparations paid to the victims of the Marikana Massacre in a media briefing. However, some statements made by the Solicitor General are inaccurate. These statements pertain to three issues: the state’s approach to reparations relating to the Marikana Massacre; details of the claims paid out to the families for loss of support; and the families’ claims for general and constitutional damages. The families have lived with loss and trauma since 2012. The Socio-Economic Rights Institute (SERI) stands by their claims for damages. >> Read the full statement here.
  • New guide helps employers navigate the domestic employment relationship (13 August 2021). SERI and Izwi have written a new guide, called “Employing a Domestic Worker: a legal and practical guide”, for employers of domestic workers in South Africa to inform them of their rights and obligations in the employment relationship and to provide practical advice and support to assist them in improving their employment practices. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Marikana Massacre 9th Commemoration (10 August 2021). This year marks the 9th year since the Marikana massacre. On 9 August 2012, the mineworkers embarked on a strike over their working conditions and to demand a living wage. On 16 August 2012, the South African Police Service (SAPS) attempted to end the strike by responding with lethal force. Over the course of a few days, the cumulative death toll reached 44 people including mineworkers, Lonmin security personnel and two SAPS officers. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI and Izwi Domestic Workers Alliance launch new guide for domestic employers (9 August 2021). Many employers are unaware of the laws which regulate the domestic employment relationship, and domestic workers are often afraid to approach them. For example, although the law requires all employers to register their domestic workers for UIF, only about 20% of employers have done so. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI condemns the use of lethal force against peaceful protestors in eSwatini (2 July 2021). Over the past month, the people of eSwatini have intensified pro-democracy protests demanding systemic political reforms. The protests call for reform following years of widespread suppression of political actors, human rights defenders and journalists through the misuse of the law, arbitrary detention, torture and death. The protests also take place against a backdrop of persistent economic hardship and increasing unemployment. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI stands in solidarity with Abahlali baseMjondolo and condemns the abuse of the criminal justice system (17 May 2021). On Tuesday, 4 May 2021, Abahlali baseMjondolo deputy president Mqapheli Bonono and Abahlali member and eKhenana resident Siniko Miya were arrested and charged with ‘conspiracy to commit murder’. These charges stem from witness statements made in relation to a recent meeting with the residents of eKhenana about a murder that took place in Cato Manor in March. We condemn these efforts to stifle movements of dissent by the harassment and criminalisation of targeted figures. We reject this abuse of the criminal justice system and call for the urgent release of Mqapheli Bonono, Siniko Miya and Maphiwe Gasa. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI seeks clarity from Compensation Commissioner regarding deadline for retrospective claims from domestic workers (5 May 2021). On 8 April 2021, SERI addressed a letter to the Compensation Commissioner on the subject of retrospective claims from domestic workers injured at the workplace as far back as 27 April 1994. The main concern of the letter was the cut-off date for submitting retrospective claims, 20 November 2021, as published by the Compensation Commissioner in the Government Gazette on 10 March 2021. As South Africa celebrates workers in the month of May, SERI wishes to highlight a potential challenge affecting one of the country’s most vulnerable groups of workers. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Illegal eviction renders Dunkeld West residents homeless (9 April 2021). On Tuesday 6 April 2021, employees of the Red Ant Security Relocation & Eviction Services, with the supervision of the Sheriff, illegally evicted dozens of residents from their homes on a property in Dunkeld West, leaving them homeless and destitute. During the eviction, residents lost their homes and most had their furniture and personal possessions destroyed, resulting in the elderly and mothers with infants having to sleep on the street. In addition to being evicted from their homes, the residents have had to endure harassment and intimidation from law enforcement and private security. SERI has launched an urgent application for the restoration of the residents to their homes and to restrain any further interference with their occupation until a proper court order has been obtained. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI welcomes the release of the Marikana Panel of Experts Report on Policing and Crowd Management (31 March 2021). On 29 March 2021, the Minister of Police Bheki Cele released the Panel of Experts Report on Policing and Crowd Management. The Panel of Experts was established in 2016 by then Minister of Police Nkosinathi Nhleko in terms of the recommendations of the Farlam Commission of Inquiry. The panel was chaired by the late judge David Sakelene Vusimuzi Ntshangase and comprised of national and international experts in policing and members of the South African Police Services (SAPS) and the Civilian Secretariat for Police. The panel submitted the report to the Minister of Police in July 2018. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI condemns SAPS use of force against peaceful student protestors (10 March 2021). For the past five days, students at the University of the Witwatersrand have embarked on protests over their grievances about the financial exclusion of students at the University. On Wednesday, 10 March, students staged a protest in Braamfontein, on Jorissen, De Korte and De Beer streets. Members of the South African Police Service (SAPS) responded violently to the protests, resorting to firing rubber bullets, using water cannons, tear gas and stun grenades to disperse the protesting students. We have learned that numerous people have been gravely injured and that a number of students have been arrested. We have also recently learned that one person has been killed and for this we extend our deepest condolences to their family and loved ones. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Midrand waste reclaimers challenge attempts to render them homeless (1 March 2021). On Monday, 1 March 2021, a cohort of 107 waste reclaimers will appear before the High Court in Johannesburg to oppose eviction from their homes. The property is undeveloped land located between a residential complex and a business park in Midrand, Johannesburg. The applicant is Rycloff-Beleggings (Pty) Ltd, the registered title-holder of the property. The occupiers are informal reclaimers who have been residing on the property for at least five years. In addition to living on the property, access to the land has enabled them to eke out a living by sorting and storing their recyclable materials on site. >> Read the full statement here.


  • Constitutional Court Affirms the Rights of Domestic Workers (19 November 2020). Today the Constitutional Court handed down a ground-breaking judgment on the Mahlangu v Minister of Labour matter, declaring the constitutional invalidity of section 1(xix)(v) of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act 130 of 1993 (COIDA), previously known as Workmen’s Compensation, which excluded domestic workers employed in private households from the definition of "employee", precluding them from claiming from the Compensation Fund for work-related injuries, illnesses or death. The Court pointed out the stark contrast as “all other employees are protected by COIDA”. Significantly, the Court ruled that the order of constitutional invalidity is to have immediate and retrospective effect from 27 April 1994. >> Read the full statement here
  • Families of slain Marikana miners want the truth about massacre to be revealed(13 November 2020). On 10 to 12 November 2020, Former North West Deputy Police Commissioner, Major General William Mpembe, Brigadier Gideon van Zyl, Colonel Dingaan Madoda and Lieutenant Colonel Oupa Pule presented evidence in their defence at the North West High Court on charges relating to the death of Motisaoitsile Van Wyk Sagalala, one of the Marikana striking miners. The four police officers are charged with defeating the ends of justice, contravening Section (29)(1) of the IPID Act for failure to report a death in police custody to IPID and contravening Section 6(2) of the Commission Act for lying to the Commission under oath. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI supports Nigeria's #EndSARS movement & condemns the use of force against peaceful protestors (23 October 2020). Over the past two weeks, young people across Nigeria have taken to the streets under the banner of the #EndSARS movement calling for the immediate abolition of the federal government’s Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) which has operated since 1992. The Squad has been accused of a wide range of excesses including extortion, harassment and humiliation, arbitrary arrest, rape, torture and extrajudicial killings. Many people including youth and members of the LGBTQ+ community, reported being targeted based on their appearance. The demonstrations call for an end to police brutality, demand police accountability, and call for an end to widespread corruption and poor leadership. >> Read the full statement here
  • SERI launches Water Rights Case Study: Water services on farms - The role of the municipality(19 October 2020). On Tuesday 20 October 2020, the Socio-Economic Rights Institute (SERI) will launch its first case study, Farm dwellers fight for access to water in Umgungundlovu District Municipality, which is one of four case studies in SERI’s “Claiming Water Rights in South Africa” research project. The research examines how water rights are being claimed in South Africa and draws lessons from the work of communities and civil society organisations in a diverse range of circumstances. The research series consists of four case study reports and a synthesis report.  >> Read the full statement here
  • Rhodes University continues to deny Yolanda Dyantyi a fair disciplinary hearing(4 September 2020). Rhodes University continues its war against Yolanda Dyantyi, a former student who took part in the anti-rape protests on the University campus in April 2016. In November 2017, the University permanently expelled Ms. Dyantyi after she was convicted of “kidnapping”, “assault”, “defamation” and “insubordination” by a disciplinary inquiry instituted by the University. She was convicted by a disciplinary inquiry, which was procedurally flawed. The punishment meted out was grossly prejudicial. The terms of her expulsion have made it practically impossible for her to enrol in any other higher education institution for the foreseeable future. >> Read the full statement here
  • Calgro M3, SAPS, JMPD and the Sheriff collude to illegally evict Fleurhof residents(31 August 2020). On Tuesday 25th August 2020, employees of the Red Ant Security Relocation & Eviction Services once again descended on a block of flats in Fleurhof, illegally evicting dozens of residents from their homes, leaving them homeless and destitute. This ruthless campaign has culminated in the eviction of thousands of residents since the beginning of August. No court order has been granted for any of the multiple evictions on the residents’ homes. These evictions violate the Constitution, which mandates that a court order considering all relevant circumstances must be granted before an eviction can be executed, as well as the regulations in terms of the Disaster Management Act. >> Read the full statement here
  • Excessive use of force by police is a failure to learn from Marikana(28 August 2020). On 26 August 2020, Nathaniel Julius died in hospital after he was allegedly shot and wounded by police officials at Eldorado Park. Nathaniel was a 16-year-old boy living with disability. According to Nathaniel’s family, he failed to respond to questions from the police officials because of his disability and was consequently shot. The community of Eldorado Park have taken to the streets to demand justice. The police have responded with violence, further escalating tensions. >> Read the full statement here
  • Eight years since Marikana, the brutality and lack of accountability continues(13 August 2020). Sunday, 16 August 2020 will mark the 8th anniversary of the Marikana massacre. Each year has passed without justice for the mineworkers and their families. Since 2012, only nine police officers have been prosecuted for the deaths of three striking mineworkers and two police officers. However, the National Prosecuting Authority, has failed to prosecute anyone for the deaths of the 34 mineworkers who were shot and killed by the police on 16 August 2012. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI challenges Sisulu to stop demolitions of homes across the country (2 July 2020). SERI has noted the media statement issued by the Department of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation on Wednesday, 1 July 2020 in response to the brutal eviction of Empolweni residents in Khayelitsha Cape Town by the Anti-Land Invasion Unit and metropolitan police. In the statement, the Department outlines Minister Sisulu’s intentions to challenge the City of Cape Town in court for illegal evictions and provide permanent housing for 49 families currently in Empolweni. While the Minister’s efforts are welcomed, they fail to fully acknowledge the widespread nature of evictions and demolitions of poor and vulnerable households across the country during the COVID-19 lockdown.  >> Read the full statement here

  • Mashaba’s inner city police raids irrational and unconstitutional, court says (30 June 2020). On 29 June 2020, the full bench of the High Court in Johannesburg delivered a judgment declaring section 13 (7) (c) of the South African Police Services Act 68 of 1995 (the SAPS Act) constitutionally invalid. The full bench found that the former Provincial Commissioner failed to apply her mind to the template-based applications for the authorisations which led to the warrantless raids of the applicants’ homes and simply rubber stamped the applications brought to her. The raids in the residents’ homes were “carried out in a manner that was cruel, humiliating, degrading and invasive” and demonstrate an egregious abuse of, and infringement of the residents’ constitutional rights to privacy and dignity, the court held. >> Read the full statement here

  • Inner city residents head to court to challenge the constitutionality of police raids (13 March 2020). On Monday, 16 March 2020, the residents of 11 buildings in inner-city Johannesburg will challenge the lawfulness and constitutionality of over 20 police raids of their homes conducted between 30 June 2017 and 3 May 2018. The raids were conducted in terms of section 13 (7) of the South African Police Services (SAPS) Act while two of the raids were conducted without any legal authority. The residents contend that section 13 (7) of the SAPS Act is unconstitutional in that it unjustifiably infringes the right to privacy, contained in section 14 of the South African Constitution. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Domestic Workers head to Constitutional Court on 10 March (9 March 2020). On 10 March 2020, the Constitutional Court will hear the Mahlangu v Minister of Labour matter. Applicants Sylvia Mahlangu, the surviving daughter of a domestic worker who drowned in her employers’ home in 2012, and the South African Domestic Service and Allied Workers Union (SADSAWU) successfully challenged the constitutionality of Section 1(xix)(v) of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act 130 of 1993 ("COIDA") at the North Gauteng High Court in 2019. >> Read the full statement here.



  • Justice for Marikana: Commemorating the 7th anniversary of the Marikana massacre (9 August 2019). Friday, 16 August 2019 will mark the 7th anniversary of the Marikana massacre. The mineworkers and their families have yet to see real justice. Only eight police officers, including Major General William Mpembe, in his capacity as former North West deputy police commissioner, have been charged for crimes related to the massacre. The eight have been charged for the deaths of three striking mineworkers and two police officers who were killed on 13 August 2012 and for failing to disclose a death in police custody and for lying to the Farlam Commission. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Gauteng MEC Lebogang Maile gets it wrong on Winnie Mandela (8 August 2019). SERI represents 133 residents of the Winnie Mandela informal settlement in their action to compel the delivery of RDP houses built with their subsidies, but fraudulently allocated to others over a decade ago. The residents have noted Gauteng MEC for Human Settlements Lebogang Maile’s remarks about their decision to sue the Ekurhuleni Municipality for constitutional damages after the municipality missed a court-ordered deadline to replace the residents’ stolen houses. Notably, the MEC was party to the court application in which that deadline was set. The MEC did not oppose the application and elected to abide by the decision of the court. >> Read the full statement here.
  • SERI to launch four research publications on informal settlements in South Africa (4 July 2019). The Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa (SERI) will launch four of its latest research publications on informal settlements in South Africa. The reports emanate from research entitled “Informal Settlement: Norms, Practices and Agency”. The three site-based research reports are on Ratanang informal settlement in Klerksdorp (City of Matlosana); Marikana informal settlement in Philippi (City of Cape Town); Siyanda informal settlement in KwaMashu (eThekwini Municipality), and a fourth Synthesis Report that pulls together findings in each of the themes (tenure security and land use management; political space; access to basic services and economic life) across the three sites. >> Read the full statement here.



  • Johannesburg's low-income residents are fighting for decent housing (30 November 2018). On 30 November 2018 SERI launched a new community practice note, which documents the struggle of the Inner City Federation (ICF), a self-organising coalition of tenants and unlawful occupiers from over 40 buildings in inner-city Johannesburg that advocates for better housing and basic services and challenges the stigma associated with low-income residents. The note examines the struggles of poor inner-city residents to resist evictions, harassment and displacement; establish and maintain effective self-management structures in dilapidated buildings; collectively mobilise; and advocate for decent, affordable housing. >> Read the full statement here.
  • South African civil society submits parallel report on the realisation of socio-economic rights to UN Treaty Body (13 September 2018). South Africa ratified the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) in January 2015. As required by the ICESCR, the South African government submitted its initial report to the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) in April 2017. A coalition of civil society organisations called “South Africa’s Ratification Campaign of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and its Optional Protocol” (the Campaign) submitted a parallel report to the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR), the international treaty body responsible for monitoring the implementation socio-economic rights by states. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Never Forget: Commemorating the Marikana Massacre (13 August 2018). It has been a full six years since the Marikana massacre took place. Most of the recommendations that came out of the Farlam Commission have still to be acted upon. The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) recommended almost two years ago that 71 police officers be charged. To date, only a few police are facing charges relating to the incident that began on the railway tracks on 13 August 2012. >> Read the full statement here.
  • Response to media reports on offers of compensation for slain Marikana miners' families (20 July 2018). SERI is aware of a media report that alleges that the families of the miners killed during the Marikana massacre have been offered R100 million in compensation. SERI is currently taking instructions from the families on various offers of compensation that have been made by the State via the State Attorney. None of those offers, whether individually or collectively, amount to anything close to R100 million.  >>Read the full statement here.
  • Court finds Marikana housing activist Napoleon Webster not guilty (22 May 2018). On 22 May 2018, the North West High Court discharged Marikana housing and land rights activist, Napoleon Webster. The court discharged Webster and found him not guilty after the prosecution failed to produce any evidence that linked Webster to the death of a local ward councillor. Prosecutors ultimately conceded that Webster was entitled to an acquittal, and accepted that the State had failed to “establish [Webster’s] involvement” in the murder. >> Read the full statement here
  • Correcting false statements by Herman Mashaba (10 April 2018). SERI is aware of the statements made by Herman Mashaba and Tony Turison, of the City of Johannesburg, to the effect that SERI has “obstructed” its efforts to address the needs of occupiers of bad buildings. These allegations are false. There is not a single instance in which the City has provided alternative accommodation, unless SERI or another public interest NGO, has gone to court to force the City to make the accommodation available. Approximately 1000 residents of unsafe buildings have been rehoused in this way since 2008. Far from obstructing the City, “so-called” human rights lawyers, and our clients, are the only reason the City ever does anything for poor people living in unsafe buildings in Johannesburg’s inner-city. >>Read the full statement here.
  • Occupants of collapsed building had been waiting for emergency housing for 8 months (9 April 2018). The families liging in an abandoned building at 39 to 41 Davies Street in Doornfontein, Johannesburg, which partially collapsed on 9 April 2018, killing three children, had been asking the City of Johannesburg for safe emergency accommodation for eight months. In July 2017, City official produced a report for Mayor Herman Mashaba strongly recommending that the occupiers be provided alternative accommodation. Yet, the City took no steps to provide the occupiers with a safe alternative. >>Read the full statement here.

  • Families of Marikana miners urge Ramaphosa to turn his promises on Marikana into action (22 February 2018). During his reply to the state of the nation address debate in Parliament on Tuesday, 20 February, President Cyril Ramaphosa said that the state was committed to compensating the families of the striking miners who were killed by police on 13 and 16 August 2012 during the Marikana massacre. In August 2012, these workers, with thousands of others, were on strike demanding a living wage when they were killed after police opened fire on them. SERI welcomes Ramaphosa’s comments and hopes that his promises will lead to action on the part of the state. >>Read the full statement here.

  • Civil society proposes alternative, people-centred budget (20 February 2018). Ahead of Minister Malusi Gigaba's budget speech on 21 February 2018, a broad collective of socio-economic rights organisations have developed an example of what South Africa's national budget could look like if it takes the needs and concerns fo ordinary South Africans seriously. The human rights budget draws on existing trends in budgeting and makes strong recommendations about where funds should be allocated to give effect to fundamental human rights enshrined in the South African Constitution. SERI contributed to the human rights budget. >>Read the full statement here.


  • Court orders Ekurhuleni Municipality to correct housing corruption (15 December 2017). The North Gauteng High Court ordered the Ekuhuleni Municipality to build 133 houses for the residents of the Winnie Mandela informal settlement near Tembisa. Judge Mmonoa Teffo found that Ekurhuleni had failed to provide the residents with houses that were constructed with their government-approved housing subsidies. The houses were instead occupied by other, unknown people, often as a result of corruption in the housing allocation process, which Ekurhuleni controls. This breached the residents’ constitutional and statutory housing rights. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • Rhodes University expels two student activists for life over April 2016 protests (12 December 2017). SERI represents Yolanda Dyantyi, a student activist,   matters concerning her participation in anti-rape protests on the Rhodes University campus during April 2016. In March 2017, months after the protests, the university instituted disciplinary proceedings against Ms. Dyantyi. Ms. Dyantyi was convicted in her absence, and permanently excluded from the university. All of her most recent examinations were invalidated. As far as SERI has been able to ascertain, this is the harshest penalty the niversity has imposed for ten years for any offence whatsoever, including rape and sexual violence on campus. >>Read the full statement here.
  • City housing rules “cruel, condescending and degrading” says Constitutional Court (1 December 2017). The Constitutional Court has said that the City of Johannesburg committed a “monumental irregularity” in breaching the rights of 11 poor people to whom it provided temporary accommodation after they were evicted 5 years ago. However, when they got to the shelter, the residents were split up from their families into men’s and women’s dormitories – even if they were married or had children of the opposite sex. They were also locked out of the shelter during the day under the shelter rules. The Court struck the rules down and interdicted the City from applying them to the residents for the rest of their stay at the shelter. >>Read the full statement here.
  • High Court orders the City of Cape Town to purchase or expropriate land in ground-breaking judgment (31 August 2017). The Western Cape High Court has dismissed an application to evict 60 000 people living in the “Marikana” informal settlement in Philippi near Cape Town finding that this was not a reasonable or constitutional option available to the state. Instead, the court found that the only reasonable option was for the state to purchase or expropriation the Marikana land to avoid making the Marikana residents homeless. The court directed the City to initiate this process by entering into good faith negotiations to purchase the Marikana land, and expropriating the land in the event that purchase negotiations failed. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • City of Johannesburg dumps Fattis Mansions residents in a field at gun point (21 July 2017). The City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) has moved the residents of Fattis Mansions to a field to the south of the inner city, at gun point. Despite being ordered to provide alternative accommodation by the High Court on 19 July 2017, the City has still not provided any shelter to the residents, many of whom own their units in Fattis Mansions. The residents and their furniture have been dumped in a field outside the Wemmer building, which houses City-run rental accommodation. The Wemmer building is full, however, and is not able to accommodate any of the residents. The residents are sitting on the ground with their furniture. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • City of Johannesburg leaves 257 men, women and children out in the cold despite court orders (20 July 2017). The High Court has ordered the City of Johannesburg to accommodate 257 men, women and children who were evicted yesterday from Fattis Mansions at 66 Harrison Street, Johannesburg. The residents of the property approached the court on an urgent basis last night at 7pm, to obtain an order allowing them to return  to the building. Justice van der Linde ordered the City to accommodate the residents overnight while he considered his judgment. However the City failed to comply, forcing residents to spent the night out in the cold. This morning Justice van der Linde refused to restore the residents to the building, on the basis that the property is not safe for occupation, and directed the City to provide the residents with emergency accommodation immediately. By 3pm the City had not complied with either of these orders. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • SERI launches new guide on relocations to alternative accommodation (17 July 2017). On 20 July 2017 SERI launched a new resource guide,  Relocating to Alternative Accommodation: Legal and Practical Guidelines. Relocations have the potential to severely disrupt peoples’ lives and negatively impact their livelihoods, community relations and sense of security. To make sure this doesn’t happen, the relocation process should be carefully planned, well-run and participatory. SERI developed these guidelines to assist those involved in the planning for and carrying out relocations to alternative accommodation, including legal practitioners and government officials dealing with housing. The guidelines offer practical guidance on how to ensure that relocations are carried out in a way that respects the constitutional rights of the people being relocated. >>Read the full media alert here.
  • Cape York Fire (6 July 2017). On 05 July 2017, the Cape York building in Johannesburg caught fire again, killing 7 people and injuring 7 others. Fires in Inner City buildings and settlements without water, sanitation and electricity are not uncommon, and this is not the first fire in the Cape York building. The City of Johannesburg has failed to provide meaningful solutions to help poor people who are inadequately housed in the Inner City. Life threatening conditions in unmanaged, unregulated and un-serviced Inner City buildings must be addressed. Owners of these buildings must be brought to book by the City. Residents seeking basic services can no longer be turned away by the City because they are not property owners. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • Constitutional Court issues ground-breaking housing judgment (8 June 2017). The Constitutional Court held that evictions that lead to homelessness are unlawful, even if they are agreed to by all of the residents who stand to be evicted. Judges must make sure that people under threat of eviction are properly informed of their rights to contest eviction proceedings and claim alternative accommodation. In addition, judges must investigate the circumstances of all residents in order to assess the impact that an eviction will have on them. >>Read the full press statement here.
  • Winnie Mandela residents challenge housing fraud in Tembisa (22 May 2017). One hundred and thirty-three residents of the Winnie Mandela informal settlement challenged the Ekurhuleni Municipality’s failure to given them possession of housing constructed with their subsidies.The residents live in shacks at the Winnie Mandela informal settlement in Tembisa. Each of the applicants had applied for, and been allocated, a state-subsidised house in the adjacent Winnie Mandela Park township. Each of the residents’ subsidies was then used to develop a specific stand on a specific site in Winnie Mandela Park. But these stands were not given to the residents. They were occupied by other people. >>Read the full media alert here.
  • Inner city residents victorious in resisting eviction (19 May 2017). The Johannesburg High Court today set aside an eviction order granted against 84 men, women and children living at 8 O’Reilly Street, Hillbrow in Johannesburg’s inner city. The Court held that the eviction order should not have been made without the City of Johannesburg (“the City”) being part of the proceedings. The City is obliged to ensure that the eviction of the community would not result in homelessness. >>Read the full press statement here
  • Launch of new video emphasises lack of justice for Marikana (20 March 2017). At 9h30 on Human Rights Day, 21 March 2017, families of the mineworkers killed at Marikana, mineworkers and members of the Slovo Park Community Development Forum (SPCDF), with the support of the Marikana Support Campaign, gathered in Slovo Park to commemorate the Sharpeville and Marikana massacres. The event will included the launch of a new SERI short film, Bringing the Truth Home, and started a week-long campaign to raise awareness about the slow progress of the state and Lonmin in ensuring that there is justice for the victims of Marikana. >>Read the full media alert here.
  • SERI and SAITF launch new resource guide for informal traders (20 March 2017). On Wednesday 22 March 2017 SERI, in partnership with the South African Informal Traders Forum (SAITF), launched a new resource guide for informal traders in Johannesburg. The launch took place at the Gauteng Provincial Legislature. Informal Trade in Johannesburg: Your Rights is a resource guide for informal traders making a living in Johannesburg which spells out what their rights are, and what avenues are available to ensure those rights are protected. >>Read the full media alert here.
  • 60 000 informal settlement occupiers resist eviction in the High Court (7 February 2017). SERI appeared in the Western Cape High Court between 8 February 2017 and 15 February 2017, representing the approximately 60 000 occupiers of the Marikana informal settlement, located in Phillipi on the Cape Flats. The occupiers argued that there is no humane and dignified manner in which a settlement of that size could be evicted or relocated. They asked the court to grant an order requiring the City of Cape Town to consider the  expropriation  of  the  land. >>Read the full media alert here.