17 August 2022
The Minister of Social Development, Ms Lindiwe Zulu would like to clarify the remarks she made last Friday, 12 August 2022 at the Presidential Imbizo and Oversight Visit in Sedibeng, Gauteng Province on the employment of social work graduates.
The Ministry of Social Development has noted comments on the social media platforms that has misconstrued Minister Zulu’s remarks as employment discrimination against unemployed social workers that were self-funded or funded through other means in favour of unemployed social work graduates that were funded through the Department’s Social Work Bursaries. Yet nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, on the day in question, Minister Zulu indicated that the Department of Social Development is working jointly with other Departments and the National Treasury on a sector-wide strategy to absorb all unemployed social work graduates in other sectors of Government, including Health, Police and Basic Education.
The fact that Minister Zulu mentioned DSD-funded unemployed social work graduates does not mean that she is oblivious to the desperate plight of self-funded unemployed social work graduates.
“We are working with sector departments and the National Treasury to address the plight of all unemployed social workers in the country, especially given the socio-economic challenges and social ills that require interventions by social service professionals and levels of unemployment amongst young people in the country”, said Minister Zulu.
“Since the advent of COVID-19 pandemic, the Department has absorbed a substantial number of unemployed social work graduates, albeit on a contract basis across all nine provinces, irrespective of the source of funding for their studies. These unemployed social work graduates were recruited through the database that the Department set up in 2019 specifically to register all unemployed social workers and social auxiliary workers in the sector, added Minister Zulu.
ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT