Minister Blade Nzimande has made a call for public comments on the Draft Policy: Building an effective and integrated Career Development Service for South Africa. All comments should be made in writing to Mrs. Salome Mashabela at firstname.lastname@example.org within 60 days of its publication in the Government Gazette (3 June 2017).
The Constitution of South Africa was adopted “so as to: heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights.” It also sought to “Improve the quality of life of all citizens and free the potential of each person”. Amongst its foundational values are: “Human dignity, the achievement of equality and the advancement of human rights and freedoms as well as “non-racialism and non-sexism.”1
The Bill of Rights embedded in the Constitution also indicates responsibilities and limitations associated with those rights viz. “All citizens are…equally entitled to the rights, privileges, and benefits of citizenship; and are equally subject to the duties and responsibilities of citizenship.”
All South Africans are not only obliged to adhere to the prescripts of the Constitution but are also expected to promote its principles and intentions in the manner in which they participate in the interdependent social, political, economic, ethical, legal, personal, community, family, and cultural domains of their lives.
The Constitution also stipulates that “Every citizen has the right to choose their trade, occupation or profession freely” and also that the “practice of a trade, occupation or profession may be regulated by law.” In relation to access to information, the Constitution establishes that “everyone has the right of access to: any information held by the state; and any information that is held by another person and that is required for the exercise or protection of any rights.”
The right to choice of trade, occupation or profession and the right of access to information are of particular importance to Career Development Services.
The performance agreement and outcome five that the Minister of Higher Education and Training signed with the President in 2010 with regards to outcome five, namely the development of a “skilled and capable workforce to support an inclusive growth path” with the associated output 5.1 dealing with the development and implementation of a standardised framework for cooperation on the provision of career guidance and information services in the country mandated the Minister of Higher Education and Training to coordinate career development in the country. The delivery agreement associated with this output includes the Ministers of Basic Education, Social Development and Labour as signatories.
Each department has furthermore the specific responsibility to coordinate and manage career development activities in the sector they are responsible for through specific legislative and policy mandates. Provincial departments, local government, organisations and institutions are also conducting career development activities in various forms.
On 19 February 2014 Cabinet approved the development of a National Career Development Services Policy, implementation strategy and consultation process across all spheres of government. It noted that a coordinated career development service is urgently needed to ensure that youth, students, under-employed workers and unemployed citizens have access to quality career information and career services. This will enable them to make better and more informed career choices that deliver higher levels of employment and help to increase sustainable economic growth in the country.