Dr Francine Masson
Company: Wits University
Biography: She completed her BA Social Work from the University of the Witwatersrand, after qualifying as a social worker she worked as an employee wellness co-ordinator for local government for ten years. During this time she completed her Masters in Occupational Social Work. She joined the University of the Witwatersrand in 2004 as a lecturer and co-ordinator of the occupational social work programme. She completed her PhD in 2016 and is currently completing a Post Graduate Diploma in Teaching in Higher Education. She has presented papers at both international and local conferences and has published in the fields of occupational social work and trauma. She currently lectures and supervisors both undergraduate and postgraduate social work students and also has a limited private practice.
Presentation Title: Responsible Practice in the Corporate World: Moving from the micro to the macro lens
Abstract: Employee assistance practitioners have a responsibility to ensure that effective programmes are established in order to promote the health and wellbeing of employees. However to maintain the focus of a wellness programme on the employee only, could have detrimental results. While traditional and classical models of employee assistance programmes have guided workplace interventions in South Africa, our unique history and discriminatory past requires that we develop relevant and contextually appropriate programmes. As such, workplace wellness programmes have a fundamental role in contributing to the transformation of the South African workplace. Furthermore, legislative changes since 1994 have provided many opportunities for employee assistance practitioners to advocate for human rights, democracy and justice in the workplace. Employee assistance practitioners have a responsibility to increase their understandings of multiple client systems (employees, organisations and communities) as well as their knowledge about organisations and change management. As such they are ideally positioned to help develop policies and practices to eliminate unfair discriminatory practices and to contribute to the transformatory agenda of the South African workplace.