21 August 2020 - NW1819
Chirwa, Ms NN to ask the Minister of Health
(1)On what date will his department ensure that the approximately 51 community healthcare workers who took to the streets at Dukumba in Bhisho demanding permanent contracts on 16 July 2020 are permanently employed by his department, as some have been employed on renewable three month contracts for over 10 years; (2) what number (a) of community healthcare workers does the Republic have, (b) of those community healthcare workers are on contract and (c) is permanently employed by his department?
1. There are standing Public Health and Social Development Bargaining Council (PHSDSBC) Resolutions 1 and 2 of 2018/19 and 2019/20 pertaining to standardizing Community Health Worker (CHW) remuneration at R3,500 per month. These Resolutions also highlight the need for processes to guide the employment, placement, remuneration, skills development and other processes related to conditions of employment for CHWs. The extension of Resolution 1 of 2018/19 to 2019/20 will allow the Department to engage all relevant stakeholders to guide the processes on conditions of employment for CHWs. Currently, the recruitment and remuneration for CHWS is enforced through these Resolutions, which do not make allowances for permanent employment, other than renewable of annual contracts. Furthermore, this matter is currently before the Bargaining Council wherein the Department engages with Labour Unions on possible interventions.
2. (a) There are 49,526 CHWs contracted across all Provinces.
(b) There are 49 526 CHWs who are on contract employment.
(c) The Department is not aware of the number of CHWs employed permanently. The Department became aware of the Gauteng Province (GP) intentions to employ CHWs permanently following the announcement by the Health MEC, Dr Masuku, stating that as of 1 July 2020, the Gauteng Department would have finalised the translation of 8,500 CHWs as Level 2 employees and the Department will complete the remaining number by 31 July 2020. There has not been any formal communication to the Director General (DG) for Health in this matter however, the DG has written to GP Head of Department seeking clarity on the matter. For this reason, we cannot confirm the number of CHWs employed permanently by Gauteng Province.