Ethical trade in action

 

The manager/supervisor training programme, funded by Comic Relief, continues to be very exciting. The aim of the programme is to assist farm/winery managers and their supervisors to better understand their respective roles in promoting and protecting workers' rights, and in particular addressing areas of common concern around discrimination and sexual harassment. The training comprises a two-day workshop for managers and their supervisors/team leaders, and a one-day workshop for workers.

PROGRESS REPORT ON THE WIETA/ETI TRAINING PROJECT

We believe that we assist workplaces as much as possible administratively to identify gaps and provide them, for example, with policies that they can use and references from the WIETA audit support documentation. The provision of these readily drawn-up policies has been welcomed by many of the sites. One of the key successes has been the training that is the 'same' for everyone, although pitched at different levels. This in itself has assisted in encouraging open and frank conversation among all staff members at the various workplaces. Among all levels, participants felt that this not only started the conversation but also initiated a process of trust building.

The project funder, Comic Relief, visited during April 2013, which mainly involved going to the sites where training had taken place. Another key area was monitoring and evaluating the overall administration of the project, which needed to show good governance of monies received. We believe we were very successful. However, what was a challenge and of concern was that we are only halfway through the targets, with only seven months left to meet the remainder. The reason for this was largely a result of the protest action in the last quarter of 2012. We requested a possible extension of the project by at least a quarter to compensate for this, which will assist in getting more sites to undergo training, as well as the finalisation of the reports and final project workshop.

The project has been able to conduct the following training to date:

  • Farms: 61workplaces (35 fruit, 22 wine, 7 flowers) - some farms are diversified
  • Managers: 210
  • Supervisors: 348
  • Workers: 2683
  • Baseline Assessments: 19
  • Impact Assessments: 11
  • Regions reached: Boland, Cape Metropole, Overberg and West Coast

By the end of November 2013, we need to reach:

Workplaces: 145
Workers: 5 262
Supervisors: 634
Managers: 651
Baselines: 19
Impact Assessments: 11

The project has in principled secured training outside the province in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. This, however, will only assist in part with reaching our targets. It would help a great deal if we could secure more training in the Western Cape because this was the initial area identified and therefore the material is mostly Afrikaans, English and isiXhosa. We would like to encourage producers in the Cape winelands to sign up for the training.

We would also like to extend a big thank to the two wine producers who requested immediate training after WIETA's AGM on 25 June 2013 and another farm/cellar that confirmed that training was to be done on their sites within the following month.

For more information on the Managing Diversity Training Programme, contact desmilene@wieta.org.za

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