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Question
Posted by: Ella | 2012/08/20

Question re disabled child and labour law

Hello CS - this question is unrelated to your field of expertise but I was hoping you (or one of your readers) could maybe point me in the right direction.
A colleague gave birth to a severy disabled child about 5 months ago and since birth the little one was in and out of hospital. Since the birth it was simply a fight to keep the little babe alive. We work for a family business and there was not a hell of a lot of empathy or understanding for her situation. None of us gets any benefits, i.e medical aid, retirement contributions etc. She is not married and is really struggling financially. Her maternity leave ran out and she got granted another 2 (no pay) months. She has been claiming UIF which helped a lot. Today however, she got called in by our ''HR'' and got laid off. Was told that ''management do not know when your child is going into hospital again and can''t afford keeping a temp''.
I do understand where the company is coming from but its not like they cannot afford it. Of all things, they CAN afford it. The babe is getting better but will never be ''normal''.
My young (ex) colleague is down and out and this is the very last thing she expected or deserved.
I so wish to help her to ''fight this fight'' but I want to do it right.
Where can she go? What does our Labour Law say about a single parent with a disabled child?
Any pointers, please?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

I think nini is right, and the CCMA, maybe the Dept of Labour, should be able to advise. Check with your local Law Society, as at times they have operated a scheme offering a free first consultation, I think for 30 minutes, wich ould help clarify her rights ; and explore also, there should be a free law clinic at your nearest law School/ university, which should be able to give more detailed advice on her rights and options.

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2
Our users say:
Posted by: Nini | 2012/08/21


I think your first step should be to contact the CCMA. They will be able to advice you on what is right and wrong, and if she has a valid case or not. If they granted her the additional 2 months maternity leave then I dont see why they have the right to then " fire"  her because she''s off for too long.

Reply to Nini
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/08/21

I think nini is right, and the CCMA, maybe the Dept of Labour, should be able to advise. Check with your local Law Society, as at times they have operated a scheme offering a free first consultation, I think for 30 minutes, wich ould help clarify her rights ; and explore also, there should be a free law clinic at your nearest law School/ university, which should be able to give more detailed advice on her rights and options.

Reply to cybershrink

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