Department of Employment and Labour Promotes Communication on Employment Equity Amendments and Affirmative Action

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employment equity affirmative action

The South African Department of Employment and Labour is urging trade union federations to facilitate communication between ground-level workers regarding the Employment Equity (EE) amendments and Affirmative Action. This call to action was made during a workshop aimed at empowering trade union representatives on their responsibilities as members of EE consultative forums.

Importance of Affirmative Action for Equitable Workplace Representation

Niresh Singh, the department’s Deputy Director of Employment Equity, emphasized the importance of implementing affirmative action to achieve equitable workplace representation. He stressed the critical role of workplace activism and consultative forums, as all parties involved share the responsibility of enforcing the Employment Equity Act and Affirmative Action.

Better Consultation Between Employers and Trade Unions

Singh highlighted the lack of union involvement as a significant shortcoming and urged employers to consult with representative trade unions, or directly with employees if no unions are present. He recommended adopting an inclusive approach and ensuring that everyone is included for the right reasons and within the appropriate focus areas.

Furthermore, Singh suggested that unions should include non-designated groups in consultative forums to foster an inclusive and growth-oriented society.

Key Responsibilities for Designated Employers

The workshop outlined key responsibilities for designated employers such as conducting workforce profile analyses to determine under-representation based on race, gender, and occupational level. Employers must also analyze their employment policies, practices, procedures, and working environments to identify any barriers to employment.

Singh clarified that the Employment Equity Act aims to include various other groups, such as people with disabilities, Coloured people, Indian people, and White women. He emphasized that the focus should be on creating a fair and equitable workplace rather than occupying job positions without the necessary skills.

Support for Upcoming Commission of Employment Equity Report

Trade union federations expressed their support for the upcoming launch of the Commission of Employment Equity Report, set to take place next week. This event aims to foster continued progress towards more equitable workplaces in South Africa.

The Department of Employment and Labour’s recent workshop is an essential step in promoting effective communication between trade unions, employers, and employees about the Employment Equity amendments and Affirmative Action. By ensuring that all parties understand their roles and responsibilities in creating a more equitable workplace, South Africa can continue to make strides towards building a more inclusive and growth-oriented society.

A Russian-Spanish journalist and Cape Town native, channels his lifelong passion for South Africa into captivating stories for his local blog. With a diverse background and 50 years of rich experiences, Serjio's unique voice resonates with readers seeking to explore Cape Town's vibrant culture. His love for the city shines through in every piece, making Serjio the go-to source for the latest in South African adventures.

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