Social development department recruits 1,809 more social workers

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Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu. Picture: ANA

Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu has announced that an additional 1,809 social workers are being recruited to help provide a range of social work services, including timely psychosocial interventions to support for affected individuals and families.

Addressing the country on the department’s response to Covid-19 for level 4 risk-adjusted approach on Monday, Zulu said the social workers would be employed for three months, with the breakdown of their allocation as follows:

Eastern Cape: 171
Free State: 92
Gauteng: 676
KwaZulu-Natal: 266
Limpopo: 116
Mpumalanga: 128
Northern Cape: 33
North West: 81
Western Cape: 246

Priority will be given to social work graduates who have registered on the department’s database of unemployed qualified social work graduates.

“A further 1,210 unemployed Social Work graduates will be given a one-year internship opportunity in a joint venture between HW-SETA, the South African Council for Social Service Practitioners (SACSSP), the DSD and Wits Health Consortium. The SACSSP will ensure that all graduates signed up for the two projects are verified and licensed to practice. They will all be exposed to training before their placement.

“The provision of psychosocial support services are an integral part of disaster response as it helps individuals and communities to rebuild their lives,” said Zulu.

The department had published regulations which give effect to the extension of temporary disability grants from the date they were suspended until the end of October this year.

This extension applies to all temporary disability grants that lapsed between February and March.

“In cases where the temporary disability grants were suspended, they will be reinstated and paid until the end of October. The same applies to the Care Dependency and Foster Child Grants that are due to lapse during the lockdown period. The payment of these reinstated grants will take place before the end of May.

“We hope this extension will give persons with disabilities some peace of mind in the midst of this deadly pandemic,” said Zulu.

The updated regulations also allow for the movement of children between parents who reside in different areas, provided they have a court order or a parental responsibilities and rights agreement or parenting plan, registered with a family advocate, said Zulu.

This will be allowed on a once-off basis.

The Citizen