Fighting Xenophobia, August 28, 2011

KC JOURNAL NO 28 August 2011

Pitso Mompe* reports on the Anti-xenophobia network.

Xenophobia at the School. The network discussed the poor conditions under which foreign nationals are being employed as cheap labour. Foreign people are also isolated in township communities. The media contribute to xenophobia through calling foreigners names. There is also competition for scarce resources in commuities between local and foreign nationals.

Some of the strategies against xenophobia discussed was that foreign nationals be treated equally, like everyone else in the country. There is a need to invite foreign nationals to every township meeting and workshops to share skills and to express themselves. Foreign nationals should also be encouraged to join other associations such as refugee councils, local street vendor and street net organisations. Local community banks or stokvels should be opened up to assist small businesses; and raise awareness about xenophobia. Community based organisations were encouraged to join forces with government, like the Department of Social Development.

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