The Community Health Workers in the Moretele Municipality in the North West have presented a memorandum of grievances to the municipal officials at the Moretele Health Sub District offices. This comes after the provincial health department’s alleged failure to fulfill their promise to absorb them permanently.

The health workers are demanding improved salaries, full benefits such as medical aid as well as uniform. Some of the workers say the department has submitted incorrect information to the South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) and this has negatively affected them.

“What we are asking from the department is that, what they did in Gauteng, they should do it also in the North West. So, we need something solid, not signing contract every year, we don’t need to sign those contract, we need to be permanent employees,” Community Health Worker says.

“It’s been a long time working and earning stipend, so now we are tired of this stipend, because we have responsibilities, and what is the difference between us and Gauteng, if Gauteng can get permanent, we also can get permanent because we are in the same country,” another Community Health Worker explains.

North West Health MEC, Madoda Sambatha, says the department appreciates the value and contribution of community health workers. He says they play a critical role.

Sambatha acknowledged that while they are guided by the national agreement, paying community health workers through Persal (Personnel and Salary System), has had a negative impact.

VIDEO: Community health workers in North West demand permanent employment