Thursday, August 21, 2008

Labour, Hell

I have resorted to making a playlist of the cheesiest Eighties Pop music to keep me from slitting a wrist as I edit a report on case studies of child abuse. Carly Simon right now is belting out her Working Girl woes to me. And I have polished off a great deal of sugar. Someone pass the vodka please.

Anyway. To get to another delightful fck up.

Between my expedition of CV trawling and my colleague’s Industrial Relations part time course, I am starting to realise just how dangerous our labour laws are.

Someone commented that they are so “liberal” that now employers have become too scared to hire people and rather are turning to machines to do the job. The labour laws ironically have led to mass amounts of job losses. That Mbeki has accepted this, but he cannot reverse it thanks to the pressure of the unions.

What it means for me….

If someone with a criminal record applies for the job, I cannot not hire him on the basis of this record, if the crime happened more than five years ago.

If someone applies for the job, but I know they had one helluva substance abuse problem 6 years ago to the point that they could not perform their job, I cannot take this knowledge of the previous behaviour into consideration.

What I keep asking, is can I ask this person if they are now part of AA or the such?? And THEN consider their application.

If a very pregnant woman approaches me for the job, but I only need someone for a year contract, I cannot discriminate on the fact she will be unable to work for a quarter of the contract.

We are not completely certain about if a convicted paedophile applies for a job to be one of my project caregivers. I must re-read my Child Act. But I do know that as a volunteer at a children’s home, I must produce evidence that I have a crime-free record.

If I want a reference on a person, the previous employer can only state that the person did work at hi/ her company, for what period, and doing what. No subjective voicing allowed.

Any one of the 1001 people who applied for the job are allowed to ask me why they did not get the job. And I had better give a valid and legal reason.

And that the term “we found someone we believed to be more suitable for the job” is the best phrase to have in one’s back employing pocket!

When does the employer need to protect themselves, and when should they stop being “so judgemental” when considering a person’s profile.

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