Enter your keyword

Briefing Paper 562 – The Decriminalisation of Sex Work by Lois Law

South African law criminalises all aspects of sex work, meaning that both the selling and buying. of sex are illegal. However, on 30th November 2022, Cabinet approved the publication of the Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill of 2022, which deals with the decriminalisation of sex work, for public comment.2 As the Bill makes clear, it will decriminalise sex work […]

Briefing Paper 561 – Mental Health and Well-being by Lois Law

2022 has been the year during which most of the world emerged from the restrictions imposed by the COVID-19 pandemic. People crept out of their homes. Some went back to their offices and other places of employment, some continued to work at home, while others had no work to which to return. The masks came […]

Briefing Paper 560 – The 2022 Report on Trafficking in Persons by Peter-John Pearson

This year the US State Department issued the 22nd edition of the Trafficking in Persons Report. It is once again a comprehensive analysis of the scourge of human trafficking and the attempts of various countries, 188 in all, to combat it.   BP 560 – The 2022 Report on Trafficking in Persons by Peter-John Pearson

Briefing Paper 559 – The People Shall Govern: The Slow Road to Electoral Reform by Mike Pothier

South Africa’s first democratic national and pro- vincial elections in 1994 were held under a pure proportional representation system in terms of which political parties were awarded seats in direct proportion to the share of the vote they managed to secure. This was regarded as the only fair and reliable way of gauging the strength […]

Briefing Paper 550 – Giving Up on Governance? by Mike Pothier

At the beginning of this year, a large part of Parliament burnt down. Whether or not arson was involved, it has been established that the sprinkler system was not working properly; that fire doors were unable to do their work due to being irregularly held open; and that the security staff who were supposed to […]

Briefing Paper 549 – Outliving the High Cost of Living by Kenny Pasensie

The ‘poverty premium’ that flows from price increases of petrol, diesel, illuminating paraffin, electricity, etc., affects the poor differently than the rich or the middle class. This ‘poverty premium’ is best summed up by a Terry Pratchett Discworld character, Captain Samuel Vimes,[i] who muses that the rich are rich because they manage to spend less […]

Briefing Paper 548 – World Refugee Day by Peter-John Pearson

In this comment, Pope Francis touches on the very core of this year’s World Refugee Day theme. Every year the United Nations observes World Refugee Day on 20th June.[i] The UN describes this day as one that “shines a light on the rights, dreams and needs of refugees, helping to mobilise political will and resources […]

Briefing Paper 539 – The Presidential Employment Stimulus – Denting Unemployment? by Kenny Pasensie

Statistics South Africa’s (Stats SA) latest quarterly labour-force survey, released in November,1 did not make for good reading. South Africa’s unemployment rate is now at a world record high of 34.9% – that is about 14.3 million of the working-age population. If the expanded definition of unemployment is used (this includes discouraged jobseekers) the rate […]

Briefing Paper 538 – Municipal Coalitions – A Viable Way Forward? by Mike Pothier

More than month after the official results of the 2021 Local Government Elections were released, the mayoral committees of at least three major cities had not been finalised. Johannesburg, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni were all ‘won’ by the Democratic Alliance, and that party’s nominees duly took up the two most important roles, mayor and speaker, in […]

Briefing Paper 537 – Where are They? Missing and Abandoned Children by Lois Law

Children have become increasingly vulnerable to all kinds of abuse and neglect during the lockdown, and what little oversight there was in terms of school and ECD centres has been interrupted. It is an environment where it is easy for children to go missing, with ideal opportunities for trafficking. Furthermore, the lockdown has seen an […]