25 November 2018

The South African Democratic Teachers' Union (SADTU) fully supports the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence which begins from 25 November to 1O December. This international campaign aims to stimulate action to end violence against women and children and raise awareness on the negative impact that violence and abuse have on women and children.

This year's theme, #HearMeToo could not have come at a better time; we agree that for far too long, silence and stigma have allowed violence against women to escalate relentlessly. The voices of women and children should not be silenced but be treated with respect when they report cases of violence against them.

As a Union in the education sector, we welcome a Resolution signed at the Education Labour Relations Council (ELRC) in September that we believe will be instrumental in ensuring that justice prevails in cases where educators are accused of sexual misconduct involving children.

Children testifying as witnesses or victims in disciplinary hearings against teachers charged with sexual misconduct, will no longer be subjected to testify in multiple platforms but in an arbitration process that will have qualified arbitrators with sufficient experience in hearings involving minor children. We believe this will go a long way in ensuring that matters against educators charged with sexual misconduct will be speedily resolved and that learners are not subjected to further trauma.

SADTU will, during this period, make its message loud and clear against gender based violence, more especially against children. We cannot allow the conduct of a few to tarnish the name of the profession and that of the Union.
As an affiliate of COSATU, SADTU is fully behind the Federation's Day of Action Against Gender Based Violence - women and children violence in particular, 27 November.

ISSUED BY: SADTU Secretariat

CONTACT:

General Secretary, Mugwena Maluleke: 082 783 2968
Deputy General Secretary, Nkosana Dolopi: 082 709 5651
Media Officer, Nomusa Cembi: 082 719 5157