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Member of the Mayoral Committee for Group Corporate and Social Services in the City of Johannesburg Cllr Ntombi Khumalo this morning started her day with a walkabout and met people with disabilities at Group Human Capital.

MMC Khumalo engaged employees on various issues affecting people with special needs in the workplace.

Among other things, she wanted to have a sense if the employees have tools of trade specific to their special needs, do they have easy access and enough facilities like toilet facilities, are they receiving any kind of training and do they feel they have equal opportunities to grow in the City like anyone else. 

The first stop was in the office of Annetjie Bezuidenhout, an Administration Officer at Management Support Services. She said she has adjusted to the City’s facilities despite her struggle to walk.  

“Here at Metro Centre some of our restrooms do not accommodate people with disabilities, people have to go to certain floors to get facilities that will accommodate their needs. 
“Another challenge that cuts across to every employee that I can think off is stationery. I have to buy my own stationery because there isn’t any in the City,” she said. 

MMC Khumalo said people with disabilities have been excluded from the mainstream of society and continue to experience difficulty in accessing fundamental rights. 

“As the leadership of the City of Johannesburg, we acknowledge that people with special needs require special attention and if we want to achieve our priority to create a professional civil service that serves the residents of Joburg with pride, we need to attend to all issues that may hinder people with special needs to perfume to the best of their ability,” said MMC Khumalo. 

Other employees proposed that a proper induction be conducted for the security personnel as most of the queries they dealt with could have been easily resolved with had the officers  went for an induction when they were absorbed. 

The City has insourced more than 3 000 security officers who were previously working for service providers.

MMC Khumalo said In order to realise some of the objectives and bring everyone on board, she urged all departments to commit to provide the necessary support to each and every employee. 

“Persons with disabilities in particular need every support we can give in terms of mentorship, coaching and any other necessary tools of trade required to enable them thrive within the city. 

“We are also ensuring that the recruitment processes are accessible to people with special needs compared to other applicants with the same level of education and qualifications. The City must therefore continuously improve the contractual obligations with the recruitment agencies to support and encourage applications from people with disabilities,” concluded MMC Khumalo.