News Labour department condemns ‘thuggish behaviour’ levelled against staff

Labour department condemns ‘thuggish behaviour’ levelled against staff

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Department of Employment and Labour in Gauteng has noted with grave concern, the acts of violence levelled against its staff and malicious damage to property by a few members of the public at Soweto and Atteridgeville Labour Centres on Tuesday 15 September 2020. 

The department said the violence which was directed at officials and private security personnel is unacceptable and goes against the constitutional values of the country and departmental ethos. 

‘WE WILL NOT ENGAGE THOSE WHO RESORT TO VIOLENCE’ – LABOUR DEPARTMENT 

The department, condemning violence in the strongest possible terms, said it will not engage those who choose to resort to violence and thuggish behaviour. 

“The criminality will not be condoned. Sadly, these attacks occur in exceptionally vulnerable communities, where service delivery is most needed. Such violent and thuggish behaviour aimed at our officials and property is despicable, to say the least,” it said in a statement on Tuesday. 

“The Department calls on the law enforcement and criminal justice system to ensure that the perpetrators of acts of violence are held accountable,” it added. 

The labour department said it will not allow lawlessness and violence to disrupt the service delivery at its labour centres.  

“This kind of unacceptable acts of violence have long-lasting and have widespread implications for the physical and mental health of individuals,” it said. 

LONG QUEUES LEADING TO FRUSTRATIONS 

The department of labour also said it should be noted that as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, all the offices of the department had to operate with minimal numbers of staff in order to ensure their health and safety. 

“This also includes the Department taking appropriate measures to ensure that our clients are also protected from possible infection. As a result, the speed and efficiency with which services had to be rendered to our clients were severely hampered. This resulted in long queues outside our offices, thus leading to frustrations and complaints. Notwithstanding all of the above challenges, our officials are committed to ensure that all our clients do receive the services,” it said.   

The labour department appeals to all its clients to use relevant and well-established platforms to raise their concerns.  

“We have a clear criterion of the number of clients we will assist per day while observing lockdown regulations.  We are committed to continue helping our vulnerable clients and workers to provide financial relief especially to those who are still under lockdown conditions,” it added. 

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